Monday, October 12, 2015

Letting Go

For most of my adult life, I've been in control. I'm one of those individuals that follow people around redoing a job after they've done it because it wasn't done my way. You know. I'm the one that rearranges the dishwasher after it's loaded. And refolds the towels because they're not folded like I want. I'm your basic control freak. My way or the highway, as they say.

Then, a couple months ago, I woke up in blinding pain. Over a period of two weeks, my condition had deteriorated to the point I couldn't get out of bed by myself. If the hunk didn't perform the chores, they didn't get done.

That's when I started learning the art of 'letting go'.

A control freak tends to flatten the confidence of the folks around them like a steam roller. In their quest for control, they send out a strong, clear message, "You're so incompetent, I don't trust you with this task."

Many of the control freaks tell themselves, they're not really seeking control so much as performing the task correctly on the first pass, thus saving time and energy. They're the ones who make their children's beds and do their laundry--even when they're adults...because, hey! Obviously, their son or daughter wouldn't perform to their high standards. In this way, they foster dependence. And of course, that just proves the control freak is desperately needed.

Think about that for a moment. I'll wait.

There is nothing wrong with having standards. But sometimes we set the bar so high, no one can ever meet it. They all back off and quit trying. It's our own fault when we end up having to do everything on our own.

So back to my personal epiphany. I discovered the world didn't stop if I wasn't there to take care of things. Dishes still got washed. Food was prepared. Underwear works the same whether it's folded or not. Mostly, it doesn't really matter which pair of shoes I wear. Life went on without me being the boss.

I LIKE it this way.

Much of the pain is under control now. And if I move slowly, I can get around on my own with the help of my walker. But I'm not too worried about 'doing'. I no longer itch to redo chores someone else has done. I've found freedom in letting go.

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