There’s No Recipe for Letting Go

Let’s face it…letting go is hard. This is not how I thought things were going to turn out. Don’t get me wrong…I understand I have a great life. Great kids, loving friends, a supportive family. So I feel somewhat guilty when I have moments of wanting it all to be different. Today is one of those days.

Logically it makes sense to let go. But I feel like a three year old being told to take a nap in the middle of a fun-filled day. I don’t want to!  And as much as I know in my head that everything is always working out for my highest good, my heart still hurts. And it’s my heart that’s holding on for dear life.

For more than a year…15 months to be exact…I knew what my future would look like. I had met, or rather reconnected with, the man I thought was the love of my life; my soulmate. I believed to the depths of my soul we would be together forever. I thought he did too. I ‘knew’ no matter what we faced, we would get through it together and come out stronger on the other side. I believed this with every ounce of my being. I was wrong.

It seems he didn’t believe that because it’s over. It’s been over. He’s moved on with someone else and he’s not coming back. That’s the reality. I understand that; I’m not delusional. I get it. But still, I’m holding on. My heart still feels the love we had; the possibility; the hope. My heart still wants him to call and say he made a huge mistake. That I’m the only woman he’s every loved. My heart wants the fairytale back. My head knows that’s not going to happen. Both of us are pissed off!

So now I find myself in this awkward middle place. I feel like I ‘should’ be past it. I know many of the people in my life would be thrilled if I would quit talking about it. But I’m just not there yet. I’m here. We all understand the beginning; when something happens that devastates us and rocks us to our core. The pain is excruciating and we wonder if we’ll ever feel okay again. And we all know what it looks like to get over it and move on. We can see new possibilities and we feel alive again. But I think we put very little focus on the place in between those two. The place I am right now.

The middle is where time seems to stand still. The place between what I wanted to be and what is. Logically I know I ‘should’ move on, but emotionally my heart hasn’t caught up yet. There’s a disconnect. So that’s where I’m sitting…in the middle. And what I’m realizing is there’s a purpose for this place that I would totally miss if I kept making myself wrong for being here. I’m discovering I need this time to be; to think; to contemplate. Often we’re in such a hurry to get through something, we don’t allow ourselves the time to just be with it. The middle is the place where your heart has the time to heal. To feel the sadness. To relive the memories. To be angry. To be grateful. To be.

I can’t force myself to be somewhere I’m not. I’m not through this yet; I haven’t gotten to the other side. And I would be lying to myself if I said I had. But I also feel some pressure to get over it already. And I have to ask myself, what is the appropriate amount of time to get over such a devastating loss? Is there such a thing? Is there a chart out there somewhere that says it takes so much time to move through the grief and pain? I don’t think so. Because it’s different for everyone. And what I’m discovering about myself is that while I’m often slow to jump in…I’m equally slow in getting out. That’s just me.

Letting go takes time and patience. It doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process. Life’s lessons are learned in stages. We need to fully inhabit each stage as it comes. And not have the expectation that it’s all going to go smoothly, in some perfect order. There’s no recipe for getting through difficult times. You just have to be with it and know…you’ll be done with it when you’re done with it. You may not feel like you’re making progress. You may actually feel stuck. But this is where you do your most important work. This is where you become whole again.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lisa Carson
    Apr 17, 2011 @ 18:03:30

    I’m sorry you are hurting over the recent news. It is always painful for a long time. I think what makes this situation more painful is you really didn’t have an opportunity to “talk this out” with him. Without that closure you aren’t able to process everything in a healthy manner. So it leaves you trying to answer the questions you really wanted to have answered.

    My heart goes out to you Shannon. I wish I knew some hit men!!

    xoxo

    Reply

  2. Shawn
    Apr 18, 2011 @ 10:32:53

    It’s all like an unexpected death…not knowing the hows or whys…My heart feels for you…You so deserve happiness and joy in your life and I know you will feel complete again…I love reading your blogs, how your words express how so many of us feel inside sometimes….Take and make JOY out of the little things in life…sometimes that’s what gets me out of bed in the morning…Bless…xoxo

    Reply

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