AN AUTHENTIC TRADE-OFF

Today’s Prayer to Passage will be from the book ‘Simple Abundance’ by Sarah Ban Breathnach.

Today I pray, “Dear God, It is the season for Joy! I don’t feel much joy today. I feel a bit blue. I know that this too shall pass. What am I forgetting? Amen.”

I held the closed book in my hands, concentrating on my prayer, and opened the book to this passage:

“As Melanie Beattie reminds us in ‘The Language of Letting Go’: ‘Whatever we try to control does have control over us and our life.’
And while we might walk away from the wreck, we’re often more upset by the loss of the illusion than by the reality of the rubble. The good news is that we can pick up the pieces and salvage the best of a bad situation, but only after we become aware that we have unconsciously betrayed ourselves.
You can never lose something if you never had it to begin with. You were never in control and never will be. Let go of that illusion so that you can cut your losses and move on. Acceptance of the inevitable — as difficult and painful it might be today — is the first step toward an authentic trade-off.
‘We trade a life that we have tried to control,’ Melanie Beattie ressures us, ‘and we receive in return something better — a life that is manageable.'”
—SARAH BAN BREATHNACH

This and a laugh-out-loud phone conversation with my mom were exactly what I needed today. I can usually talk myself out of the blues. It is a rare occasion that I feel tears behind my eyes that won’t come out and yet won’t go away. Today I felt overwhelmed, exhausted, and too experienced at life and troubles to not be able to convince myself into another — more positive — direction. Why can’t I be happy, full of joy, and the one in a truly good mood? Why can’t I be lifting others up because I know how to be filled with glee due to an ability to create an empowering context? What’s wrong with the me I know myself to be?
I was asking myself these questions all day. In fact, I spent more time talking to myself about not being able to control my inner blues than I did realizing that some days, the blues cannot be controlled. But I made it to this moment. And I’ll make it again. And again. Tonight’s telephone laughter was a reminder that laughter is possible in the future. The grass will always be greener no matter which path I might choose. And managing while letting go of the need to have control: that is quite alright.

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