My husband and I moved recently. It wasn’t a big move. In fact, we moved to a new one bedroom apartment a mere 1.1 miles from our old one bedroom apartment. But a move is a move, if you know what I mean. Moves are stressful and require hours of packing and planning and unpacking and trips to Ikea. And it always seems, no matter how much planning you do, there is always a little moving drama and a second trip to Ikea for that oddly named part that didn’t come in the box.
As a (recovering?) perfectionist, this move was a mental and emotional challenge. I remember waking up with a nervous stomach and trembling hands the day the movers came, wishing time travel were real so I could skip ahead to the part where everything was properly placed in our new home. I had done the best I could to prepare for this day, and I was choosing to believe that was enough. That’s all any of us can ever do anyway – give our best and believe it’s enough.
Or, as Allison Fallon says in her book, Indestructible,
“We are not entitled to outcomes. We are only entitled to our effort.”
There were some things I had packed to perfection and there were other things I hadn’t packed at all – things I was trusting the movers to pack for me. This was the hard part, of course. Could I trust them? Could I trust myself for trusting them? Was I insane?
I puttered around the apartment that morning, preparing for the movers arrival. And it took effort, but with every breath I fought the urge to go down the all too familiar rabbit hole of anxiety. I kept telling myself to relax. It was all going to be fine.
“Let go…let go…let go,” was the refrain in my head.
I’ve written before about ditching the need to be perfect and learning to trust. And what I always find at the heart of these issues is the idea of letting go, of approaching life with hands outstretched and palms open, of not gripping everything so tightly you squeeze the life out of life itself.
I knew the only way I would have the strength to get through our moving day without a breakdown was to let go. I had to let go of the need for everything and everyone to be perfect. I had to hold my possessions and my attachment to them loosely. After all, it was just stuff. And, most importantly, I had to allow the impossibly delicate love that somehow holds all things together to be the thing holding me together.
Letting go is vulnerability that actualizes strength. Letting go is letting love win.
Turns out, letting go is also the secret to a successful move. Everything went smoothly that day and nothing was lost or broken in the shuffle, including me.
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