Season shift as the weather changes. Leaves shift from green to reds, golds, and shades of brown until the trees let them go. And oh what a lesson that is – to truly let things go. It’s one I struggle with. I hate being wrong. I hate losing. I hate when I can see where things are going but am powerless to change them. I hate seeing friends hurt or disrespected and fighting when a fight isn’t warranted and isn’t the right answer.
I’m a fighter. I’m so used to standing alone, fighting alone, and having a handful of close friends dispersed across the country (and world) that when it feels like there’s something to fight for right here I tend to overreact. It’s not cool. I do the same when I feel like I am not good enough or start questioning my self-worth too. I overreact. My brain spins. I think through entire conversations and plans that haven’t even happened yet – and likely never will. I run through plans a/b/c/d/e all the way through z until I’m dizzy and have a hard time letting go. I plan too much – and lately have been fighting myself to take a step back, let go, and just see where life takes you.
So far it’s taken me some pretty amazing places. Here, where I live. On short hikes and longer walks with my dogs. Wandering the woods. Time with friends. Soccer games. Dinners with the kids at home and out. Plans for a Sassy 16 with more teenagers than I’ll likely know what to do with but I know we’ll all have a fantastic time.
There’s still a few things hanging in the balance. A few things I need to get better at letting go of, and a few things I need to give space and room to grow in good time.
There’s a chance that things come together in my corner of the Sullivan Catskills in a way that would make living here even more amazing than it already is. I am not saying anything yet, but I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed and hoping for some very good news very very soon.
We accept the love we believe we deserve.
I started this above over a week ago, and then left it to let things sit and shift as so often I do. You see, I have learned, despite my strength and willingness to fight for what I believe in, when it comes to people in your life, letting go is so much more important. When I talk about fighting and shifting perspective above, none of that means fighting for someone to stay in your life, fighting for something to work that clearly doesn’t, or trying to force change from the outside when it needs to come from within you, first.
Shift perspective, focus, and breathe.
Fight for those people in your life who need your help and support. Fight to keep your kids safe, and teach them how to learn everything from accountability to self-awareness and responsibility. Teach them that it’s okay to be uncomfortable and learn how to grow through change rather than fight things around them. Fight yourself when your brain tries to tell you you’re not worthy (you are). And then, breathe. Remember, we accept the love we believe we deserve. If you have to fight for someone to love you, to spend time with you, or to be there for you what are you really fighting for? Them? I’d think not. It would seem you’re spending more time fighting yourself to convince yourself you’re worth it when it would seem you don’t fully believe it either. Or maybe the thing you’re fighting for isn’t what’s meant for you and you need to let go to realize you’ll find something better.
Ask me how I know. I spent a long time alone figuring all of this out. It’s made navigating some of the most challenging parts of life much more manageable. I wouldn’t say easy because there are things I have faced that weren’t easy on any scale, but life isn’t supposed to be easy. We don’t grow because of the easy days. We grow through the hard ones. It’s made shifting my perspective from the outside in easier to do. Asking myself – if this thing or that thing or that other thing doesn’t work out, why is that? What can I do to grow, change, and do better? Be better? And above all else, believe I truly deserve better?
You know what happens when I do that?
My whole world slows down in all the best ways. It’s like life downshifted and things are moving more slowly so I can feel and appreciate more. Suddenly the leaves are more colorful. The clouds are whiter, the sky is bluer. The drive to the doctor is magical and not mundane. I’m smiling more. I’m breathing more. And this calm confidence I’ve been seeking and working towards for so many years comes easier these days.
I trust that when I give myself and others space to show up however they are comfortable, we see who we really are to each other and ourselves. I trust that when things get hard, I don’t have to plan out all the options and run in circles and get my mind spinning – it just quiets and I can move forward. I trust that when my friends say the’ve got me, they mean it because when I need them they’re here and they know I have and always will do the same for them. I look at past friendships and relationships that have ended, changed, or drifted apart and can allow myself and them the grace and peace to grow on our own terms in our own ways even if it’s not together or through being friends the way we may have been in the past. And I am comfortable with that and grateful for what we all learned from each other and hopeful that they are too.
We are all doing the best we can with what we have right now. Even when someone is acting petty, upset, or insecure, it’s based on where they are with themselves and where they are in their own life. That doesn’t give us a free pass to be assholes. Quite the opposite. Understanding that we’re all doing our best should be all the more reason to treat each other with compassion and kindness. It’s okay, you can compare me to anyone you like, it won’t change how I view me, or how those who know me view me, or how those who love me love me, and if it gives you some solace I wish you the comfort you seek. Just know that comfort, security, love – all of these things come from you first. You won’t find comfort in someone else if you’re not first comfortable in your own skin. You won’t find security in who you are if you’re not secure with yourself and willing to look at the hard stuff and work on that for you, first. Even love – we accept the love we believe we deserve. Why do you believe you deserve what it is you think you have or had? If you deserve better, go find it. If you’re not sure, spend some time alone and you’d be surprised what you uncover. The mind and heart are incredible things when you let them work together instead of fighting each other for what makes sense, what is comfortable, and what you want, and what makes you happy and where you truly feel at home.
It’s true. Home isn’t a place, it’s a place in the heart. But it’s also more than that. It’s where your loved ones are, where you go to smile and laugh but also where you go to cry and scream. It’s where you have people to hold you when you need a hug or leave you alone when you need to go find space or get lost in the woods for a while. It’s that calm understanding and patience that even when things feel like they’re moving fast, somehow through it all time just stands still because you are right where you’re supposed to be.
It would seem more people read the words I write than I realized, and I hope they bring you comfort too. I love how words on a page can help me grow, but also be as open and fluid to others to read whatever it is they need or want or believe they need to hear. Life is all about perspective. Perhaps, it’s time to shift yours.
There’s no place like home ❤️