06.14.2016

The Beauty in Letting Go of Control

I’m a planner. Not so much when it comes to the day-to-day, but I’m talking the big “life” plans. I love to dream about my future: living in another country, living in the actual country, having a big family…all of it. I love to have a plan, to know what’s coming next, and to at least feel like I’m in control.

But my reality right now doesn’t include any of those things – we live in a busy neighborhood in a large U.S. city, we are a typical family of 4, working 8-5 jobs, going through the motions of life while trying to do our best to be decent humans. And to be honest, as much as I like to think that I’m in the driver’s seat steering us toward our next move, rarely never am I ever in full control.

We often get caught up in a vicious myth of control. If I do “A,” then “B” will happen. If I eat healthy, I won’t get sick. If I work hard, I’ll get recognized. If I read the parenting books and go to the classes, my kids will turn out ok. But sometimes, B isn’t always a result of A. Sometimes, C or D happens, and we’re stopped dead in our tracks, paralyzed by the truth that our reality doesn’t match our plan.

Letting Go

I hold on tightly to my girls, wanting so badly to pave their future with kindness and gentleness and tolerance. I hold on to them in hopes that I can protect them from the violence which has become an all-too-common occurrence in our world, less shocking anymore than it is numbing.

I hold on to my ego, unable to apologize when I know I’m in the wrong.

Mostly, I hold on to my own plans.

But maybe we need to let go of holding on so tightly. Maybe we need to surrender to the very moment we are in now. tweet

Before I had kids, I used to take the bus to work. I loved my commute to work because I could sit back and relax. I didn’t have to worry about whether there was enough gas in the car or what the best route was because, quite literally, someone else was in the driver’s seat. I simply had to show up. How often do we just show up to life, without expectations or opinions or plans?

No matter how tightly we hold on, the sun will always rise in the east and set in the west. The Earth will always spin.

I’m learning that we gain so much by giving up, even a little. By opening our hands to what is instead of gripping tightly to what is planned. Little by little, I’m learning to loosen my grip and let go of control.

No matter how tightly we hold on, the sun will always rise in the east and set in the west. The Earth will always spin. I'm learning that we gain so much by giving up, even a little. By opening our hands to what is instead of gripping tightly to what is planned. Little by little, I'm learning to loosen my grip and let go of control.

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About Erin

I'm a thirty-something, coffee-loving mom of two living in a funky neighborhood in Seattle....all while seeking a balance between keeping up and slowing down.

Comments

  1. Oh my goodness, YES! It’s ridiculous how much control we *think* we can maintain. It’s so much better to loosen our grip!

  2. Rachel says:

    This is definitely something I struggle with, especially when I went back to work after my first child – it was so hard to loosen my grip and not be in control of every aspect of her care.

    • I struggle with this often, Rachel. It’s so hard to hold our children loosely when what we really want is to protect them forever. You are not alone!

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