“So, I uttered the serenity prayer, “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference…”, over and over again until what seemed to be too difficult becomes, not easy, but less difficult.
Sometimes we are put in a confusing situation of choosing between letting go and trying harder. That is one of the hardest decisions we will ever have to face in this lifetime especially if both will cause your heart to break into pieces.
My life has been a series of letting go. Letting go of my pacifier when I was a kid. Letting go of my mother’s hand on my first day of school. Letting go of my comfort zone when I studied away from home for college. Letting go of my youth when I decided to work abroad right after graduation. Letting go of my pride for my first job. Letting go of my hope when my first business attempt failed. Letting go of my dreams when I realized that I don’t have one anymore. Letting go of everything that is beyond my control simply because it hurts. My hand is like a broken vessel where everything just slips away uncontrollably but not surprisingly because I know losing is a part of life and I am wired for it.
I am wired for it but I am tired of it.
Why can’t I just keep them?
I wish I could say that losing things, people, and other stuff taught me a reflective life meaning. But losing those just broke my heart over and over and over and over again. Losing those just made me ask if I am really meant to be happy. Losing those made me wonder how happiness feels like. Because I don’t know how it feels like anymore. But certainly, I know how letting go does.
Letting go feels like a long sleep where you are relieved but still feels tired.
Letting go feels like keeping tears from falling and finally releasing them. You feel lighter but the pain is still there deep down in your heart.
Letting go feels like flying back abroad after a short vacation in your home country. There is a physical pain in your heart, sometimes intolerable, but once you are done with it you will feel liberated and brave just by being able to do it. At the same time, it also excites you of what will happen next.
Letting go feels like having a butterfly riot in your stomach. The butterflies that used to give you a happy feeling now started to fight against each other.
Letting go feels the same or worse than dysmenorrhea. The pain is sometimes unbearable. You just curl up under your sheets and forget about the world outside the four corners of your room.
Letting go feels like a blessing and a curse.
No matter how I find words to describe how letting go feels like, nothing seems to be accurate.
Letting go is relieving but there is one thing I am certain of, letting go hurts.
Letting go is painful. Letting go is hard. But, letting go is inevitable. Letting go won’t kill you (even if it sometimes make you feel like dying) and we all know that what can’t kill you will only make you stronger. Stay alive for the ride.
Letting go made me realize how brave I am.
Letting go made me feel alive.
Letting go made me more prayerful.
Letting go allowed me to put my complete trust in the Lord.
By letting go, I have learned the meaning of full surrender.
As much as I want to keep a grasp of the things that I want to keep in my life, I just opened my hands and let them slip through them. And now, my open hands are ready to receive greater blessings from God who made me let go. The God who provided me grace and courage to let go of things that I badly want to keep. The God who gives and takes away.
I have read somewhere that God won’t give us things that somebody else is supposed to have. God takes away for a reason. It might be painful and hard to understand sometimes but God knows what He is doing. Let go, get out of the way, and let God do what needs to be done. Trust. Have faith. Surrender.
It is only in losing that we gain. We gain better understanding of ourselves. We gain a clearer view of how we want our lives to turn out. We gain more realizations of what deserves a spot in our lives. We gain more self-worth and self-love. We gain more strength and faith.
We only lose what we cling to. If letting go of things, people, and other stuff is the only way to keep them in my life, I am willing to go through the pain. The pain and the fear of uncertainty. The pain of longing for what was once constant in my life. The pain of seeing my high hopes stumble down and die. The pain of seeing my broken walls that seem to be irreparable. The pain of seeing myself that I can’t recognize anymore. The pain of seeing my future that used to be so clear becomes hazy. The pain of not recognizing happiness anymore. The pain of realizing that what was once a reality is now a memory. The pain of losing myself. The pain of missing things and people. The pain of feeling like I could never be the same again. The pain of dealing with anxieties. The pain of the aftershock of letting go. I realized that I don’t really fear letting go, it is the “what could have beens” that I fear. The act of letting go is painful enough, nobody wants to deal with what comes after that.
But then, there is God. A God who never lets go. A God who makes letting go bearable. A God who listens, answers, and saves. A God who empties us so we can be filled again. Let us trust the process.