One of my passions in life is architecture. As a child, my European born mother dragged me from country to country, touring endless churches, chapels and cathedrals. It was not a traditional childhood, but one that has given me a visceral appreciation for sanctuaries of all sorts.
My favorite design principle relating to churches, specifically cathedrals, is that there is always a detail intentionally left unfinished; intended to symbolize that God’s work is never done with us.
A lovely sentiment, and a wonderful example of reverence, patience and compassion, yet, my personality intuitively wants to cross the finish line! Forget, the journey...I want to get “there!”
For much of my life I had a sense that if I could just get over the hump, it would be smooth sailing. If I could just learn enough, grow enough, pray enough, love or accept enough, then I would be happy. As that failed me, my mantra became…if only YOU could learn, grow, pray, love, accept, etc…. I would be happy, or at the very least, then I could behave better!
Needless to say, that was a futile mountain of disappointment I circled for decades.
Then one day (decades + 1 day) I simply couldn’t keep it up the way I was going. This time, the wise voice came from within; “let things unfold.”
My mind let out a whimper of resistance and then quickly surrendered to walking through the door of “not knowing” that has lead to more happiness than I could have imagined!...the type of happiness that is not contingent upon circumstance.
I’ve been writing this blog for a few months now, so I’ll let you in on some privy info from my last four years;
My twenty year-old dog drowned in the pool early one morning (while I was meditating safe in my bed), I’ve had two miscarriages, my husband and I separated, my cat died suddenly after a routine procedure, my finances and design biz were hit hard by the economic crash we’ve experienced in Arizona (and everywhere), and I moved home to my mom’s guesthouse, as I could not afford my mortgage.
My eyes still tear up as I write this, because of the reality of all the recent loss. And, while I don’t completely understand it, I have become utterly devoted to the miraculous power of surrender.
Today, my life does not look like what I thought it would. Yet, I am honestly and without reservation happier than I have ever been!
I attribute the subsequent miracles in and transformation of my life to following my inner prompting; “let things unfold.” Not, by the way because of any altruism, but because the fear of continuing the way I was, finally became greater than the fear of not knowing what was coming! Meaning, it seemed that my only choice was to truly and deeply let go of control (not that I really ever had any), and the constant orchestration that I thought would make me feel safe and secure.
As a result, my life is flourishing from the inside out. The success I enjoy today; every laugh, every kindness, every smile comes from the softness of my belly. No more tough girl, no more propping others up so that I can feel safe and no more outside circumstances to determine the gratitude and joy I feel everyday. And, the best part? Like the great cathedrals of the world, God will never be done with me!
It’s the ultimate way to live. And, I hope to spend the rest of my days allowing any misfortunes that have or may still come my way to be transformed into hope and comfort for others.
How are you at letting things unfold? What sadness have you carried on your own that if honestly shared might be a source of strength for another? Can you hear the guidance that is quietly whispering another way to live?
I look forward to hearing your experience.
And, as always, I am in your corner….
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Inspirational story. I admire your outlook and strength. Makes the small daily problems that arise just that... small! A great reminder to focus on the positive and wonderful things in life that are so easy to take for granted.
Hi Andrea, I am so pleased that this resonated with you! Together we can keep perspective on our lives and all the goodies tucked away in our seeming difficulties. Thank you for taking the time to reach out...I am delighted we are connected! Happy 4th to you, and I look forward to hearing again from you,sometime soon! Warmly, Thais
Thai, I LOVE this post. It’s so beautiful and true. As you say, you didn’t think your life would look this way at this point, but that’s the journey and you are a work in progress. No, I didn’t think I would be widowed at 43 with two smallish children, but I’m coming to grips with the fact that this is a beginning of a new journey. I’m kind of excited to see what unfolds, develops in me, and who I become as a result. Lots of love to you!
Hello Lovely Ellen! Thank you for your comment, and for sharing yourself so honestly. What an amazing inspiration you are. No doubt you’d rather have your husband back instead of walking this path...but, clearly you have set your heart and mind to embracing what is next. I admire, support and honor your courage and spirit. Loads of love to you dear one.