I found myself crying last night. The first good cry I’ve had in a long while and even then, I cut it short.
Probably not a terrific idea, but that’s what I do sometimes when faced with a situation I cannot change. I reach down, yank up my Big Girl Panties, and proceed to Get Over It.
The fact that I’ve been down this road a time or twenty helped, in a twistedly fortuitous way. And I hadn’t been caught off guard.
Early last week, the faint sound of a whistle could be heard. Like a dog that hears a high pitched noise out of range to human ears, my intuition pricked up last Monday, sending off an Early Warning Signal.
I remember thinking to myself, “Oh Jesus, here we go again.”
And sure enough, the Crazy Train pulled into town yesterday.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes if feels as if Life is a series of Lessons learned over and over and over again.
The bad news is, after graduating from one particular Lesson Learned, it’s more intense the next time it rolls around. It’s got sharper teeth. It’s bite is harder. It looks bigger…scarier.
The good news is, I’m not always in a season of Learning. If I do the work and pass The Test, a calm rolls in and I am graced with a time of integration and transmutation and peace. I’m given the opportunity to take the crude base material of what I’ve just experienced, and turn it into the Gold of wisdom, insight, and strength.
Some of the lessons I keep running into are:
Jumping Into the Unknown
And the Grandmama of all lessons (I’m pretty sure I’m taking PhD level courses now):
Two small but potent words. An act that is at once filled with power and surrender. It is a release. A relinquishing. An act of TRUST.
By nature, I am a Fixer. Show me a dirty room and I’ll want to clean it. Present me with a puzzle, and I’ll work like hell to solve it. Come to me with a problem, and I will lose sleep while trying to come up with solutions.
To let go of a situation – or a person – means that I allow it to BE without trying to change it by an act of my own work and will. It means that I recognize that there are some things I cannot change, and those things are better off left in the hands of my Higher Power.
God, I don’t know how Atheists do it! (No pun intended).
I mean, really! I don’t care if one’s HP is single or many, wears a feminine face or a masculine one, or presents itself with a long trunk, hooves and sporting a leotard! To walk through this life without the belief that there is a benevolent Something Bigger Than Oneself Who is actively aware of and engaged in our existence is both frightening and sad to me.
I’m not just talking out of my ass. either. I know from personal experience what it feels like to be God-less from a Dark Night period I went through a dozen years ago when I lost my religion. In the midst of a season of great turmoil and personal failure, God was no longer real to me – for the first time in over 40 years. If I weren’t such a chicken, I might have offed myself. I certainly thought about death enough – longed for it, even – as I sought relief from deep, searing emotional and psychic pain.
But here I am. Alive and well and a firm believer in the Good that is God (although my concept of God is far less rigid and way more filled with Mystery and Unknowing. And I’m good with that.)
So the act of Letting Go, for me personally, means that I relinquish the need for my own Will to be Done in a situation, and I release all to be done in accordance to Divine Will and Timing. It means that I acknowledge that everyone comes to this physical world with their own mixed bag of Sacred Contracts, Karma, and free will. And that in the end, all is as it should be.
What it absolutely doesn’t mean is that I won’t act or that I don’t care. Just the opposite! It means that I recognize that the highest path, the Best Way, might mean I have to step back and get on with the business of living my own life, changing those things where I can. I live, I pray, I give thanks, I believe.
Because in the end, it takes more strength to let go, than to hang on.