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Letting Go

Heidi Shenk "confessions" "letting go"

It has been refreshing for me to write about things that I truly believe and experience and have others relate to me about this. This was definitely the case last week when I wrote about how I think babies are aliens and my hatred for mom blogs. I think I finally just got to the point where I said, screw it! I'm writing about what I want to write about even if some may feel offended. And you know what? It feels pretty good.

I think I finally let go. I let go of any sort of weird feelings about what I was "supposed" to be writing about. For me, letting go is one of the hardest things to do. I remember my parents constantly telling me to "just let it go" while growing up. I couldn't let go then, and I still have a hard time doing it now.
When talking about letting go, I think about two Christmases ago. I had finally come up with the best idea for a Christmas gift for Andrew. These sorts of ideas are few and far between and it was the best idea for a gift that I'd ever had. I was going to give him a home brew kit. He'd been talking about brewing for about a year and I knew he would never see it coming. I spent hours doing research, but simply didn't know enough to get all of the supplies he needed on my own. I decided that we could go together and pick the supplies out together. Instead, as a lead in to the ultimate gift, I gave him a super fancy schmancy bottle opener along with the explanation that it would be for opening his home brew bottles once we went to get the brewing kit.

The next day, we drove up to Cleveland to Andrew's parents' house for Christmas. We sat in the living room and exchanged gifts. The final gift was one given to Andrew. As soon as he opened it, my heart sank. His parents had given him a home brew kit. Andrew didn't say a word about my gift. He just excitedly thanked his parents. An hour later, Andrew and I were in the car driving to meet up with a college friend of ours for dinner. I told him how upset I was that my Christmas present was ruined and that I wished he would have at least said something to his parents. I couldn't blame his parents-- how were they supposed to know that they had had the same idea for a gift?

In the car, I was literally in tears over this. My gift was meant to be something that we could do together which made me even more bummed about the whole thing. I couldn't let go of the fact that Andrew didn't even mention my gift to his parents. A little over a year later, and I still have a hard time letting go of the fact that Andrew never told his parents about this. Sometimes, when he's brewing a new batch of beer, I actually tell him, "I can't believe you never told your parents about my Christmas gift." In some ways, it felt like he hadn't stuck up for me, and I just couldn't let go.
I know it's not healthy. It's not ok to keep bringing up something of the past or to dwell over something that is probably so trivial. But I struggle. I constantly struggle. I have a hard time letting go of the fact that Andrew never told his parents. That the resource teachers at my school often get the day off from classes when we have an early release day and I lose a planning period. That a friend made plans with me and canceled at the last minute. That I had to leave an entire grocery cart full of items at Sam's Club because their debit card machines weren't working and I didn't have cash (true story and I couldn't stop talking about it for the rest of the day, poor Andrew, and I still hate going to Sam's because of this). That the lady at the post office told me she wouldn't sell me regular forever stamps for international mail.

I can't let go. I try really, really hard, but somehow it just doesn't work. I've gotten better. Much, much better, but I still constantly struggle with this. However, I have to say that after getting all of these trivial events off of my chest I finally think that I have let go.

Do you struggle with letting go of things? What helps you cope with letting go?

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