The Art of Letting Go

I’ve never been good at letting go of things.

I don’t mean silly grudges or gripes. I always have an easy time of letting those go.

I mean tangible things. Things that are comfortable to me. Things that I adore and hold meaning.  I’ll never be the person that hops on a plane and starts a new life across the country. I’ll never not be sad when I think of my childhood home and the day my parents sold it. I would even go as far as to say I don’t love to travel because I prefer the comfort of my own home and routine.

As embarrassing as it is to admit this, I had my childhood blanket right up until my college years.

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Half of the time I chalk it up to my zodiac sign being a Cancer, and the other half is that I am a super emotional person. But, whether I like it or not, life moves on. Things don’t stay the same. The childhood home sells, the quiet spots you love can get boring and change reminds you how crucial it is to grow.

I’ve learned so many lessons in my adult life but one of them has to be that letting go of things is a necessity and also somewhat of an art that I am beginning to master.

In the past, each time a part my world has changed and I’ve had to say goodbye, I felt devastated. It was to the point where I was losing sight of all the good I’ve experienced with those things to only make room for negative feelings. Sadness, dread. Since my diagnosis I’ve realized that things are just that; things. It has become an art for me to walk away from things and not feel like it is an end, but actually a new beginning.

I learned this lesson most recently when my parents sold their Vineyard home. A home we had all waited so many years to enjoy. A home that held so many memories for us and so much love. When the time came to say goodbye, I felt gratitude instead of sadness.

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Gratitude for the chance to spend my weekends someplace that was good for the soul, gratitude for the laughing I’ve done within those walls and the memories we’ve created as a family. Gratitude that I was there when I got the call that I did have a tumor. Gratitude that I was able to see my parents live out this dream until it was no longer serving them. Gratitude to have brought my closest friends and family there to enjoy our little slice of heaven with us.

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How could I cry? We had the best memories there and now it was time for another family to enjoy it as their happy place. Every now and then when I come across a photo of us enjoying the space that was once ours there is a little piece inside of me that gets sad but then I immediately snap myself out of it. I was able to live it and that is the greatest thing of all to hold on to.

So next time time your circumstances force you to say goodbye to something, I challenge you to hold on to the memories instead. Memories can never be taken away, even long after the tangible possession is gone.

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