I really like to pretend that I am in control. I might even be what
my husband some people call a ‘control freak’. But, from time to time, the Universe likes to remind me that NO ONE is in control, and that I am no exception.
The best laid plans can be blown to bits in a heartbeat. When something seems like a “sure thing”, it can fall apart. The contract can be signed and still fall through. We can’t control other people, the weather, traffic, any of it, really. And it seems that I am in need of a lesson lately, because the message keeps coming through loud and clear.
All I can control is myself and how I react to a world that I have zero control over. One of the patients that I have worked with lately has been talking about and working on trying to be less reactive when things do not go his way. His idea has been to take a breath and to say “well, that happened” in order to recognize that he has no control over anything outside of himself and to not get caught up in irrational emotion about it. I love it when the patients teach me stuff. (which happens a lot)
So, as of late, I have been trying to first take a breath and think, “so, that happened” and then to respond rather than react. I have also been trying to “see a different way” and to get out of the rut of habitual reactions. Neither of these is easy, but it’s what I am working on and I am a work in progress.
In honor of letting go of old patterns that no longer serve us, I would love to share my most favorite poem of all time with you. I return to it often. (Let me preface the poem by telling you that there is some debate about who actually wrote it. Some say that Ernest Holmes wrote it, but from what I can tell Rev. Safire Rose is the author. Odd, but alas, I have no control over that…)
She Let GoShe let go.Without a thought or a word, she let go.
She let go of fear.She let go of the judgments.
She let go of the confluence of opinions swarming around her head.
She let go of the committee of indecision within her.
She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons.Wholly and completely, without hesitation or worry, she just let go.
She didn’t ask anyone for advice.She didn’t read a book on how to let go…She didn’t search the scriptures.
She just let go.
She let go of all of the memories that held her back.
She let go of all of the anxiety that kept her from moving forward.
She let go of the planning and all of the calculations about how to do it just right.
She didn’t promise to let go.
She didn’t journal about it.
She didn’t write the projected date in her day-timer.
She made no public announcement and put no ad in the paper.
She didn’t check the weather report or read her daily horoscope.
She just let go.
She didn’t analyze whether she should let go.
She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter.
She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment.
She didn’t call the prayer line.
She didn’t utter one word.She just let go.
No one was around when it happened.
There was no applause or congratulations.
No one thanked her or praised her.
No one noticed a thing.
Like a leaf falling from a tree, she just let go.
There was no effort.There was no struggle.
It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad.
It was what it was, and it is just that.
In the space of letting go, she let it all be.
A small smile came over her face.
A light breeze blew through her.
And the sun and the moon shone forevermore.
I like to believe that things happen for a reason and when my plans are shattered, it is only a turn in the road that will lead to better things. Maybe this is just something I tell myself to feel better, but it works, so I am good with that. To quote an amazing song called ‘Black as the Night’ by Medicine for the People- “I believe in the good things coming”. This is my anthem in times of twists and turns on the path.
Let’s try our best to see the turns in our road as leading to better things and as opportunities for growth. I often tell my patients that growth begins at the edge of your comfort zone. Time to walk to the talk for a bit.
Let’s walk together.