This post is about letting go. This is a hard one because most of us love to hang onto things like our life depends on it. In some way it actually does. It’s the person we’ve become that doesn’t want to let go because that means letting go a part of ourselves.
The art of letting go means learning to recognize what you no longer need in order to grow beyond where you are. This includes people, places, things, ideas, beliefs, practices, habits. The hardest things to let go are the ones you have strongest emotional ties to. Think about that first thing you ever had to let go of. Could’ve been your first toy, maybe it was the training wheels from your bike, or perhaps it was a childhood friend who moved away.
Whatever it was, that was the first time you ever had to experience letting go. I’m sure it was quite emotional. It was difficult and guess what? You survived! Then what happened next? You moved beyond that moment and you grew up, right?
That is why we have to let go. So we can move beyond where we are currently at. Yah, I know, easier said then done. But this is something that must be done if you want to grow beyond what you’ve become. It’s easy to settle for the, ‘Hey this is me now’. But what if you say instead, ‘Hey this is me now but I’m a work in progress. Full of mistakes and errors and I’m learning to let go to make room for a better, different version of me’?
I remember after my mother passed away we had to sell my childhood home. It was a unique looking home and I loved it. Not because of it’s uniqueness but because of all the memories that were made in the home. I soon realized I had to let go of that home. That was childhood me and I’ve grown since then. After all, a house is just a house and memories can never be completely lost. So while I was learning to let go of childhood me I was making room for grown up me. There were other things I was learning to let go of.
Most importantly I was learning to let go of seeing my mother. That was truly the hardest. I remember talking with her for the very last time. She was dying fast with cancer. We were in the ER. She was laying on a gurney wrapped up in a blanket. Looking back at me with her blue-green eyes growing paler by the second. I had just spoken to the ER doctor who showed me her new scans and he had just explained to me how her tumors were quickly matastisizing (Yes, that’s the word he used) throughout her body. He basically told me this was the end. I had to go back to where she was laying and try to put on a happy face for her. But I really couldn’t do that. Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m an honest person and here I had to be honest, especially knowing it was the last time I was going to speak to her in physical form.
I started to cry and told her how much I loved her and I really wish I can help her. I asked her if she understood to which she shook her head for a yes. I told her I didn’t want her to suffer anymore and that is how much I loved her. I asked her again if she understood what I was trying to tell her. She responded as she did before and this time tears were streaming down her face. She knew I was letting her go so she can be healthy again, in heaven.
That was the last spoken conversation I had with my mother. I was really beginning to learn the power of letting go. I know I will never truly let go of her. After all, memories are forever, right? But there was a big part of me I had to let go of.
I had to let go of that part of me that always looked for her guidance, her approval. I had to let go of that depending part of me and learned to stand on my own.
One may say my mother’s death is a tragedy and it is in a lot of ways. I don’t want to discount the fact that I miss her everyday. But it’s also part of how I became who I am today. Independent, strong, and determined.
As you can see, letting go has power. It makes room for a better, different version of you. What are you holding onto? Do you think it’s time to let go of some things? May you learn to let go of the old you to make room for the new you. This is the metamorphosis story the caterpillar teaches us. Let go Butterfly, just let go!