“to be able to let go of you, it feels as if I’d also have to let go of who I’ve been…but I think that was your purpose” – the catalyst; butterflies rising
Writers hold on to a lot. We are hoarders of memories, good or bad. The intricate details of a person from the way their smile curves upward to the way they smell.
I can still remember the way my grandma’s bathroom smelled like dial soap and the way she put two index fingers in the air when she danced side to side, a cigarette hanging from her mouth. It’s the small stuff that kills us.
This is great for writing but terrible for relationships. Letting go isn’t something most of us do well, and I have had to do my share of that this year.
I love the quote above for many reasons. First, “ it feels as if I’d also have to let go of who I’ve been“, it does feel that way doesn’t it? Letting go of someone or something that has been so much a part of you for so long is meant to be a little painful at first. “It hurts because it mattered.” – John Green. Another one of my favorites.
What you are letting go of isn’t always a person. More often than not it may actually be a habit or an addiction you develop over time. Maybe you just need to let go of feeling sorry for yourself. Whatever it is, it’s not until you are trying to reach a new goal or trying to move forward somehow that you recognize the shadows of lingering relationships and experiences.
How do we tell the difference between who we’ve been and who we are? And where the hell we are going? These changes happen gradually like age. You don’t notice it but you are always in the process of becoming. You can’t go back to the past, you can’t rush forward to the future, you are stuck right here in the process of what has happened and is happening to you or for you – your choice, of course. The way you react to these things has everything to do with where you are going, who you are, and who you’ve been. The difference between each one is actually irrelevant because life is happening in forward motion. The purpose of letting go isn’t to say that things or people no longer hold value to you, but the act of letting go is acknowledging that value by using what you gained from it to build onto your life instead of allowing it to hold you back.
Like most big changes, this is easier said than done. It has taken me YEARSSSSS to realize that some things and some people are just too heavy for me. Maybe it’s the traveling I did recently, but I think of it like going to the airport. I want to reach a new destination and I can only bring so many items with me on the plane. If I have more than one purse, I can shove that purse into the other to make it look like one, and I can cram as much crap as possible into my carry on luggage right up to the maximum weight. But, if I bring everything with me, how am I going to have room for anything new?