Years ago, I wrote some wise advice to myself on an orange Post-It note and stuck it on my dresser mirror. A few months ago, I found the Post-It, surprised it survived more than a decade and two moves, in pristine condition, and still sticky!
One of Amy Grant's songs wonders "What about the love?" And I think this is a question we can all ask ourselves, particularly in light of the so-called "cancel culture."
Our feelings are real. They’re strong. And they’re as diverse as we are. They’re quite often uncomfortable. AND they're not going anywhere until we work with them.
In the words of the Buddha, Everything vanishes.
In yoga, there's a concept known as "releasing into." It's what we aim to do when we get into poses that are uncomfortable. We focus on breathing and "send the breath" to the places we feel tension and discomfort whilst trying to settle in beyond the resistance. We can apply this same concept to our lives.
My mom read this excerpt from the children’s book The Velveteen Rabbit at my grandma’s funeral:
“Real isn't how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It's a thing that happens to you… You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand.”
I can’t remember who told me this or where I read it, but I once encountered a concept that struck me, stayed with me, and has significantly impacted my thinking over the years: people come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.