The hold you once had on me has grown weaker. I see you, I feel you, and I acknowledge you, but I no longer accept you as my own. The following proclamation is why I am, and will continue, leaving you.
Frankly, there’s someone else who has a hold on my heart. We have such a great time together, too. We live in the present, we have no attachments to any outcomes, we utilize hope in every moment, and when we embrace, we are returned to Earth. We’ve found the fun parts in everyday life. Her name is Letting Go. We even have some friends that you and I never had that actually facilitate our thriving relationship: Worthiness, Self-love, Courage, Trust, and Alignment. Just to name a few.
When I was a kid and you first befriended me, you told me you’d keep me safe. You said you’d protect me by assessing my environment for threats like monsters in my closet, bears in the woods, and the unknown lurking in the dark. But the older I became, you used my environment against me, and you overstepped your boundaries. You joined teams with the likes of Judgment, Failure, and Self-Doubt. You guys became manipulative and made me believe that I needed to be afraid of everything. You assigned your friend Risk to manage it all. It became second nature to live in a way that you deemed safe, and in a place that wasn’t vulnerable. Living this way only encouraged more of your accomplices to come along for the ride. Their names were Anger, Loneliness, Resentment, Rage, Sadness, and Not Enough.
Somewhere along the way, though, I caught a glimpse Self-Love. She was the most beautiful thing I had seen in a long time; she embodied acceptance. I wanted that. She took my hand, and we ventured together into the unknown. She showed me that sometimes loving yourself means asking for help. That support allowed me to see the toxicity that was my relationship with you, Fear. You took up so much, and I simply do not have the space for you anymore.
For a while I regretted our time together. I used Anger against you and convinced myself the only way I could continue on without you was to forget about you. I thought I didn’t need you unless I was dangling from a cliff or something. However, as you continued to show up, and I continued to heal, I gained a new perspective.
I don’t think you’ll ever go away. You’re kind of like that relentless ex who keeps popping up in that coffee shop we both frequent. So I say hello, ask how you’re doing, and mention how it’s funny seeing you here again. With every interaction comes the question, “Why are you here AGAIN? I just want to drink my fucking cup of coffee in peace.” And then I think, what can I learn from this? I notice every interaction is different, because I am different, as I’ve done more learning and growing.
Just like that relentless ex, I process and notice what’s different this time around with you, Fear. I notice how I am stronger this time…and then I leave. I always leave. I leave because I know the goodness that is on the other side of that interaction. In a way you are a catalyst for me; I know that if you’re there then something great must be just over the horizon. So instead of trying to forget you, Fear, I will be aware of you. I’ll say hello, but I’ll take my coffee to go.
Author: Jenny Bork is a licensed massage therapist who specializes in stress management, chronic pain and movement education. She is currently accepting new clients.