“Just how much do you want to lose this year?”
I was not expecting the question. I been waiting for this appointment with the astrologer/tarot reader for six months. When I made it, I was still living with my then-husband, seeking the kind of clarity that can only come from completely inexplicable forms of new-agey divination. When everything is spinning toward the edge of everything I know, therapy and self-help just doesn’t cut it anymore. Give me tarot cards and crystals, tell me how the stars see my future; when nothing is certain, only those things that cannot be dis/proved will keep me on the rails. I suppose that’s my version of having faith.
Anyway, the question. Between the time I made the appointment and the day I had it, I’d “lost” (the way most people would see it) a marriage, a home, my primary pastime (bike racing), and possibly a few friends in the split. So, probably a lot. And I really didn’t want to lose any more, not at that point. I’d carefully pared down to the things that really mattered to me, thank you, and I’d like to keep the rest of it as intact as possible.
The meeting was several months ago, and I hadn’t thought of it again until now. I only remember now because my best friend moves today. Not too incredibly far, but closer than the hop, skip, and jump we were up to this point. It’s a big change, another thing that fits neatly into the “loss” column on my spreadsheet, were I keeping track.
The reader’s point was that if I didn’t want to lose any more, I needed to sit back a little and let life unfold. No more white-knuckled attempts to control my path; it was time to give up and ride the current a little ways. I guess I used to think of letting go as a form of loss, but it doesn’t have to be. I’ve worked on just being alive without forcing things the way I have always tried to.
Saying yes even if I’m not sure I’ll like something.
Saying no if I don’t want to do something, even if I might let someone down.
Letting the current sweep me away when something isn’t working.
I feel surprisingly powerful in not making decisions about things that don’t matter. It’s liberating to admit that I don’t care about everything, and don’t have to know exactly what is going to happen in order to enjoy something. It’s enough to just enjoy it.