“Just let it go.”
Don’t your toes just curl up and your innards shrink when some well-meaning person utters the above phrase to you?
Sometimes I’ll admit that’s my first reaction. I don’t like it when someone blithely quips…”oh, just let it go.” Like it’s easy to relinquish control over life’s circumstances. Like it’s second nature for me to move along, secure in the knowledge that this world doesn’t need me manning the con…so to speak.
I’m a control freak. No question about it. I like to know why something is happening so I can figure out the best way to control the situation. To effect the proper (according to me) outcome. I have no problem admitting this shortcoming of mine.
The problem is in changing this pattern of behavior.
And as I am quickly looking at the second half of my fortieth decade on this earth, I’m thinking that an about-face in my makeup is not in the cards.
So…I’ll continue on in my ways. Not trying to teach myself any new tricks. I know the penalty of this is a constant feeling of unease. A feeling that all is not right with the world.
Take for example:
1. Last Wednesday I purchased 50 lbs of white sugar to feed the humongous amount of hummingbirds that were inundating the feeders. I’m not kidding–at least 10 to 15 on the clothesline at any given time and each feeder with at least 18 to 20 vying to get a drink. I was going through approximately 6 cups of sugar a day. And so…because we live where we live…and neither visiting the neighbor to borrow a cup of sugar or running to the store to pick up a lb of sugar are possibilities…I decided I’d be smart and stock up.
HA! Thursday, a male rufous decided to lay claim to one of the larger feeders in the back that had previously had the 18 to 20 buzzing around it at any given time. Not a one was allowed to feed…that persistent little bugger kept them ALL away. I fretted about this all night (of course…couldn’t let it go…) and Friday decided to move the feeder to a new location. In the meantime, a female rufous has now started defending the two feeders in the front. I haven’t refilled those in 24 hours…I was refilling them at least three times a day. I don’t know where to move the ones in front…still ruminating on that one.
2. (Maybe this should have topped the list.) My Grams is sick. And now in a skilled nursing facility for therapy. And most likely won’t return to her home in Denver. And the future is uncertain. And complicated. And not the same as it’s always been. And that causes me some angst. She is 95 1/2 years old. That’s a lot of years. And life keeps marching on. And we were simply not ‘built to last’ as the truck commercial boasts. The passage of time is painful, isn’t it? The last few days have had images floating through my brain, both awake and asleep, of Grams in earlier times. On the PBS station in Denver for her reupholstering show, at her knitting shop, disciplining us kids in JCPenney’s in the Greeley Mall when she was taking care of us while mom recovered from pneumonia. (Who knew grandmothers could be so tough?) Always kissing us hello and goodbye. In later years…her colorful flowered cane. Her bowls of candy all around. In earlier years…the Easter money hunts at the house on Albion Street, the lamb cake with the icky coconut frosting. (That was always such a conundrum for me…excited to see it, and always hoping for a different result when I bit into it…see..an eternal optimist from the start.)
Anyway…the passage of time is something I cannot control. Not in the slightest. And learning to let go of the angst at the way life moves along, at such a fast clip it seems, is painful at best. I also cannot control the course of things at the moment. I am not the doctor. I am not her therapist. I cannot have her here with me, doing all those things for her that need to be done. I cannot tell those in charge of her care what and how they should be doing it. I cannot make the decision about her future. I can only sit in the wings and practice patience and letting go and trusting that all will be well. And as it should be. When it needs to be.
3. I have to let go of the goddamned rodents destroying, DESTROYING, my garden and my front yard. I am not kidding. DESTROYING. The digital camera broke (when I was trying to snap pictures of the latest damage dealt to the flowers I’d planted–from the bear trampling them to the vole digging them up from beneath)–I dropped it. Yup. Goes to show me maybe to just leave things well enough alone. Right? No need to document the carnage. Staying in the anger doesn’t serve any purpose. Need to move on. Need to let this go. Need to let this go. Need to let this go.
My new mantra.
We’ll see how long I can keep those words on the loop in my brain. I am easily distracted.
4. Fall is coming. Yup. Not kidding. Change is in the air. It’s cool today. I don’t even have the windows open yet. Very breezy. The sun has changed its position in the sky. Trust me when I say fall is coming here. Though it happens every year. The day after the fourth of July, the winds change. They just do. And no matter how much I try to avoid it, no matter how much I try to pretend that it’s still summer here, the change is out there, lurking at the edges. Just waiting to pounce.
Don’t get me wrong. We still have sun. For all intents and purposes, it’s still summer. According to the calendar. But I know from experience that summer is fleeting here. Fleeting. Faster than fleeting. And I tried hard not to blink. We did soccer camps and swimming and art camps and whatnot. And now we’re looking at the end of all of that. It causes melancholia in me. I rail against it as long as I can. Refusing to give in. Refusing to acknowledge it. I know with every fiber of my being I need to let go my need to control the passage of time. I know this.
Doing so however is another story.
And the next person to tell me to just “let it go” just might get punched in the face.
Have a lovely day.