A Series of Moments of Letting Go
Thought Cookie: Edition 30, Vol. 3
Life is a series of moments of letting go, moving on and holding. Each one aching and gleeful.
I am in a season dominated by letting go.
Two years ago, I wanted to hold on to the way things were before the pandemic, and somehow make them come back again. In spring and summer 2020, I admit, even as I was saying nothing would ever be the same again, a part of my heart wished I could revert back to January 2020.
Then I saw a near future rich with big payoffs after years of hard work as a small businesswoman and entrepreneur was going to pay off in some of the ways I had once only imagined.
I was holding on to what I imagined to be a big moving-on moment that would propel me into a future I hoped would complete a progression and be lovely and meaningful and prosperous.
January 2020 was a moment I felt on the verge of things.
Empowered from within.
Close to making it.
Then it all got canceled.
I entered the season of letting go.
The letting go season that began was slow at first, then consistently quickened, until I looked back over my shoulder and saw those before moments as halcyon almosts.
There was always a piece of me that was so demoralized by the cruelty of those almosts that I comforted myself with a false belief I could muscle my way back to the moment before.
(Writing that now physically hurts me with its truth.)
It was a holding-on impulse that was obviously in vain.
Then, a year ago, I wanted to hold on to my firstborn as she moved away from me and started a new life as a college student. I also wanted to let her go with grace and love.
Pain defined the gap.
But as I let go, so did a soulful, agency-filled reinvention of subtle sorts.
It occurs to me as I look at the last six months, which have also been dominated by the dance of letting go and holding on in my professional sphere, that the pain of letting go is at least somewhat self-inflicted.
By holding too tightly, for too long, I make letting go more painful.
By clinging to hope for impossible things, I drive the knife deeper.
By ignoring the smoldering embers that would ignite in more devastating ways, I force the pain to last longer.
By delaying turning to a future that has always been unknown, I also postpone the rising optimism of a future unknown.
After four decades on this earth, this repetition of letting go and moving on should come as no surprise to me.
I should be accustomed, perhaps expert, at it now.
Darn it. :)
While I may have grown in my aptitude for letting go, still I wrestle.
I am human.
But at least I see the wrestle in new light: as a sign I still have evolutions to make, inner revolutions to lead, growth to be uncomfortable with.
And new territories inside my inner acreage to explore.
And I remind myself now more regularly, like a mantra,
Life is a series of letting go, moving on, holding.
Letting go, moving on, holding.
Hello there, I’m Emily.
I’ve been a writer for…ever. And a publisher of Thought Cookie for a year and a half. Thought Cookie is my written effort to make it a bit easier for us to be human.
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