“This sounds familiar,” I thought as I lifted my goggles to look up at my swim coach.
“The problem with your freestyle is here,” she said as she tapped the side of her head. “You have to learn to relax in the water. Your other strokes are so much better. When it comes to freestyle, you are just trying to hard.”
I clutched the side of the pool as I shamelessly gasped for breath. My heart was still pounding with the effort of the last 100 meters and my head was pounding with the same old exasperating question-
Why do I have to be such a wackadoodle control freak?
Finally, I stopped panting enough to speak. “My yoga instructor tells me the same thing. She says yoga is about working hard and surrendering at the same time.”
“Exactly,” my coach responded. The water will hold you up. All you have to do is propel yourself through it. Your problem is that you are tensing up because you are trying to hold yourself up.”
These words rang through my head and heart all week long.
As I was running late for an appointment and found the road I needed to take was closed…
When one of my kids awakened me in the night to change wet sheets….
During the moments when I tried to sit to write only to be interrupted for the thousandth time…
But most of all, as I watched one of the people dearest to me in world make life devastating decisions over and again. There is nothing more difficult than that is there? We lecture, we reason, we beg and we plead. We cry out to God to strike them with a lightning bolt to the noggin, a little Divine shock therapy of sorts, in one moment and beg Him to have mercy on them in the next. We weep and tell them how much we love them and then in the privacy of our darkest moments we tell God that loving this person is too heartbreaking and we can’t go on.
Flowing through all of this grief, anxiety, and angst were the words of my swim coach, yoga instructor, and I am most certain, God himself- “You gotta learn to let go, sweetheart, or this thing is gonna kill you.”
I tried to reason with God. I agreed the lesson needed to be learned, but couldn’t He see this venue was too difficult a place to learn it? Finally, I just cried out for help.
“I can’t do this. I don’t even know the root of this in me. I can’t figure out my own heart or head. Please, please heal this wackadoodle control freak thing in me.”
Slowly, the fog parted in my head and this is what I saw…
“All I can control is the process- what I’m doing and how I’m doing it.
I can not control my circumstances, other people, or ultimately…the end result.
And I never could or did. It was all an illusion.”
So, I’m trying to let him go, this one I love. It is his life after all.
Besides, I’m really no fun when I’m a wackadoodle control freak.