Letting Go and Living

photo of a sunset with text overlay that says: letting go and living

One of my spiritual friends, Kerra Bolton, recently wrote a powerful post for Sweatpants and Coffee on inviting life's magic. (I highly suggest you go read it; her words are often transformative catalysts in my life. And my commentary will make much more sense that way.) Her first words in the article are, "What if the universe stretched its hand out to you and invited you to dance?" And then she says "... After years of trying to motivate myself with goals, resolutions, intentions, and keywords to get what I want, I decided it was time to “live invitingly.” " And then she brought it home to me with, "Invitation is NOT Intention".

*cue a waterfall of tears, anime style* I felt like she was talking about me. I've lived the last decade of my life doing exactly as she describes. In fact, I'm sure there is probably plenty of embarrassingly incriminating evidence to be found on this very blog. I thought if I just raised my vibration, focused on my intentions, created vision boards and visualization movies, I could live my best life, that it was just another self-help webinar on The Law of Attraction away.

I've been trying to force the world to conform to my wishes and desires, all the while wondering what was secretly wrong with me that I still didn't have the life I (thought I) wanted. And then in 2020, the whole world fell apart. And over the next two years, so did my personal world. I started to get some of the things I thought I wanted, only to find myself completely miserable and massively triggered. And then last year, my family lost thirteen of our friends and relatives.

So we packed our entire household into storage and set off to be near the rest of our family, without a destination, or a plan. And all the while, I've been protesting because the challenges often seem insurmountable at times. When New Year's Eve found me camped beside a lake surrounded by farmland, I was disappointed that we hadn't found the right house yet and hated the idea of the first day of 2023 being stuck out in the middle of nowhere.

And then I lost another loved one, and Kerra's words found me, as they often do, right when I needed them. Inspired by her question, I asked myself "What is the universe inviting me to do?"

Once I let go of my own intentions, I realize I'm far happier with what I've been invited to experience than I ever would have been with what I imagined for myself. I've done yoga while herons wander by, seen the most beautiful sunset of my life, gone swimming, played horseshoes, and visited Batuu; all things I couldn't have imagined being part of my life before. Because the universe wants more for me than I can imagine. My viewpoint is necessarily limited by human experience, driven by social conditioning at every level. The universe's viewpoint is by comparison, omniscient. It knows the full spectrum of all things possible, as well as my own deepest desires. And when I trust that I'm being invited to something greater, rather than being denied my demands, my life is the best it has ever been. I am the happiest I have ever been.

That's not to say life is perfect. There are still cold, windy days and sore muscles, moments when we're all overtired, overstimulated, and ready for the day to be done. But this life is far better than I ever could have imagined it to be. Because instead of focusing and forcing, I'm living. I'm open to the moment, to following my impulses. I dance when I feel like dancing. I sing when I feel like singing. I hear music when there is none. Because my gorgeous, wise friend suggested that life is better when you let go and start living it. And boy, was she ever right.

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