When life has quite literally knocked me down and to my knees, I have quite simply surrendered and (in that moment) I thought that I had given up. In reality, I simply gave up trying to control a situation that was out of my control.
"I give up"; "Help me. Please..."; "I don't know what to do"; and sometimes wordless tears that simply flow and release the pain and frustration of the moment are the words and feelings that come to mind when life has blown its harshest blows.
In the whole scheme of things, the path that I have walked has been relatively easy. It didn't feel easy when I walked through the mire of those moments, but looking back I realize (now) that it was those very moments that led me closer to where I needed to be.
When you sit in the driver's seat of your life and feel in control, it is a most wonderful feeling. Yet are we ever fully in control?
I often think of the way 'life' is so very random and a person's life-as-they-know-it could be upended in a fraction of a second. Yet we keep living each day as it comes and expect that life will unfold (basically) in the manner to which we have become accustomed.
We travel down the roads that take us where we want to go and we trust that all of the other travellers will stay on their side of the road and obey all of the laws of the land so that we can get from "A" to "B" without incident. Ninety nine, point nine, nine, nine, nine ... percent of the time we reach our destination. Once in a blue moon, we may end up with a flat tire or car trouble. Then you read in the paper that someone was simply at the wrong place at the wrong time and their life will never be the same.
We surrender to the moment more often than we realize because we simply trust that the same actions that we have repeated every day of our life-so-far, will have the same results.
Yet when life hits a crisis point, we scramble for control in an uncontrollable situation.
I've done it myself a million times. "What do I have control of here?"; " What can I do?"; "How can I make (the other person) understand/change/do-what-I-expect?"
In the end, I (usually) break it down into "What can I do to change this situation?" Once I have done all that I know how to do, I (
usually sometimes) surrender to the moment and let the tide take me where I need to be.
I always end up in a better place than I started. The more I try to hold onto the reins and control an uncontrollable situation, the longer it takes me to find that better place. The sooner I let go, the sooner I fall and the sooner I get to where I most-need-to-be.
Matters of parenthood make the lines very fuzzy. I have a friend who is struggling right now. The mom in her is very concerned about her child, which makes her answers feel very elusive. There are so very many variables at play, which muddies the waters. Yet she has almost hit her breaking point. Where does she go and why can't she find someone who has walked in her shoes to guide her through the mire?
I have not walked her walk. I only know what has worked for me and my situation was parallel but oh-so-different at the same time.
I have surrendered to the moment and it has worked for me. I have a mighty support system behind me and that gives me the security that I need to let go and let the chips fall as they may. What if you don't have that supportive system that 'has your back'? How can you let go and succumb to the pressures if you are afraid of where you may fall?
My friend, I have no answers for you but I have your back. I will walk with you through the muddy waters but the miles that distance us make this feel like a lame promise.
This was the email that I wrote to my friend - "Surrender to the moment and just trust that the tides will take you where you most need to be (sometimes desperate moments take us to hard places ... but just the right place??)". These are words that I have lived, I stand by and I trust. But my friend, I so understand that it simply isn't as easy as that. I get it.
“Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.
Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.
Just walk beside me and be my friend.”
~ Albert Camus
Through the good, the bad and the ugly ... I will walk beside you and be your friend.