Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Keep Learning and Understanding

Letting go isn't the easiest thing to do, it seems.

As Sting would sing, "If you love someone, set them free."

Do I believe that? Yes... but that makes love hurt like all hell. It's never easy to look at someone you love and do what's good for them when it breaks your own heart doing it. Although for some people, it appears to be easier than for others.

For me, it's heart-wrenching. It puts you in that realm where you don't know what the ultimate outcome will be and you have to have faith and trust in something you really believe in.

"Should I stay or should I go?"

There's give and take in any relationship... whether it be with a lover, a family member or a friend. Sometimes I get my wires crossed about which is which. Sometimes the same person can cause my heart to leap for joy and sometimes shatter it into a million and one pieces.

Why do we do it? Why put ourselves through the rollercoaster? Because the good times are just that good, my friend. My mother taught me that not too long ago. Despite some of the personal hurt and heart-wrenching moments she had with my father, the good times with him far outweighed the bad times in quantity and quality.

When others are quarreling, we can see the issue itself without respect to the sides being taken emotionally by those within the "contest." We can see the outside forces affecting each of them and understand why the emotions and sensitivities are so pronounced when they can not. But when we ourselves are under the same pressure, we often can not see it for ourselves and become embroiled within our own needs. It takes someone with great presence to look outside their own self and see themselves through another person's eyes.

Sometimes there are things we simply can not live with. We might try to live with it... perhaps through understanding of situations simply because we ourselves were once in the same situation. However, sometimes seeing another go through that is too much to bear. We all have our breaking points, no matter what we might say.

There have been many times I have looked back and truly admired my friends and loved ones for the restraint they showed in admonishing me or correcting my behavior... simply because they knew that the best way for me to learn was through experience. But there have also been times when I wondered why they weren't firmer with me given the fact that they knew where I was going.

But one can never be truly free until they've been allowed to make their own mistakes in life... sometimes more than once. Figuring out when to hold back and when to put one's foot down is the hard part. But I'll never make it to where I want to be unless I figure it out for myself, accept it and stand by it for better or for worse, without compromise.

Yes, I agonize over forks in the road. I shouldn't have to, really. I've been down some of these roads before and therefore know where they lead. This should make it much easier to pick the OTHER path. I pray for that wisdom and courage every day of my life. Sometimes I have it, sometimes I don't.

But through it all, I know that I am learning, even if just a little bit each day. I look forward to when life finally speeds up on me and the gray hair flows in the breeze.


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