The Buddha says “Everything that has a beginning has an end. Make your peace with that and all will be well.”
Can I do this? How freeing would that be to really live this way. To know that when something is started at some point it will be ending. And be ok with that. Wouldn’t I just embrace the moments and not worry and plan into the future. Would I be able to love freely, without strings and conditions or expectations of what could, should, might happen? Could I find joy in each moment and then let them go? The very essence of non attachment. To be that free.
Because it is true, and I know this. And yet I cling to the very moments of today. How many things have I released? Countless and I am still here. I am still living, loving, searching, singing, moving, crying, talking, fucking, working, mothering, being a friend……everything that makes me who I am. Letting go did not kill me, did not break me. At the end of the day I am not bitter or sad. Maybe melancholy at times, but that is the wistfulness of days gone by. Mostly I have survived every one of those releases.
Am I changed? Absolutely. Life changes us, Every single day I am different. I have an experience, major or minor and I am changed. That is Spirit recreating Itself on earth through me. Growth, creation, that is the very essence of being human. Still I let go, I accepted the endings, and I survived.
What if I could see that before I suffered the letting go. I tell you, I do not let go easily. There are claw marks on everything I ever released. What a lot of energy I put in to holding on to something that absolutely had an ending.
And what if things did not end? Could I really stay forever in a holding pattern? Where would the not ending begin? We have to grow to adulthood. Would the life I was living at 21 be my forever life? How much of life I would have missed. I had my son at 22. My youth had to end for that blessing to occur. I have had wonderful jobs and made great friends. What if my first job had not ended? I would have missed countless people I come to know and many to love. My marriage? Well If that had not ended I would have never know the beauty and satisfaction of standing on my own and building a life simply for myself. And I have been blessed with intense and satisfying relationships along the way, each teaching me more about myself. My son grew up, he cannot stay a child. I would miss knowing this amazing man and the many things he brought to my life as an adult.
Some things have been really hard to let go of. And those things are deaths; parents, friends, pets, family… How do I let go? I had no choice. Seriously all of those, claw marks, deep ones. I know in each of those losses there are lessons. Sometimes I can see them, it is not easy, I know they made me grow, I know they made strong. I know they made me compassionate. These are the ones that left the deepest scars. Some days I would trade the growth, the strength, the compassion to see them again. To be in that place of love with them again. But that is not possible in this world and this world is where I dwell. So I take the lessons and carry some sadness.
Still, I think the Buddha has it right. Knowing there is an end gives me space to celebrate what is now. To not try to make it anything it is not. There was one point in my life I really got this. My son and his girlfriend lived with me for a few years. It was crowded, it was a lot of work, it was expensive, it was wonderful. And I knew every single day that it was not forever. Knowing that gave me the freedom to simply love them and accept their love. My friends and family did not really understand how grown adults (and their dogs) could move back in with mom. Shouldn’t they be moving out, getting their own place, paying rent etc. For me, all I knew is that is was a moment in time, a gift, and everyday someone said “I love you mom”. And I knew one day it would be over. So I loved it every minute I could. Maybe that moment is my lesson in “Everything that has a beginning has an end”.
So I can take that lesson and hold it close. Remembering that what I have is today. Everything will end so that something new can begin. The Universe will fill the void and I am expecting and accepting nothing less than amazing.