The hardest things I’ve ever had to learn weren’t any skills or lessons I was taught in school. A straight A student, I naturally excelled at most subjects, but the lessons of letting go and summoning my own voice were hard earned in the quiet spaces that no one teaches you to understand or embrace. In solitude I learned to let go of what my life “should” look like, and to use my voice to declare, however small and meek a declaration it was, what it is I truly needed to survive.
It’s complicated; you obviously can’t have everything you want, but at some point in your life, the inessential falls away and you are left to choose only what is necessary to not only survive your life, but to thrive. And those are the things you raise your voice for, the seemingly selfish yet mandatory necessities which bestow breath into and upon your supposed random and inconsequential life. Were it not for this selfishness, these requirements, who would you be? Who would you be without the nuances and idiosyncrasies that make you YOU? Who would you be if you held on? Who do you become by letting go?
We aren’t taught any of this inside the buildings of a school, though. These are the by-products of a life well lived…the courage to let go and speak your truth, the strength to stand alone, safe and secure in the knowledge that while that path is difficult, it brings a comforting peace, and even a bit of hope for what is yet to come.
And yet, so many of us wait for the timing to be right…after the holidays, when my kids graduate from school, when I retire, but the truth is that waiting for optimal circumstances is merely a procrastination trap that robs us of our life. It misappropriates our choices and steals our passion. The timing is always right, because the time to let go, to choose, to use your voice, to grow, to forgive, to love, to do and say and be who you are is now.