Surrender

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surrender

 

I’ve always felt that the journey of motherhood is one of pure surrender.

 

From giving up control of when you’ll conceive, to giving over your body entirely during pregnancy and trusting it knows what to do during birth.

 

Then on to motherhood, especially those early years where you are at the complete whim of an unreasonable wailing little person who is unsure what they want, but very vocal in sharing how they feel about it.

 

Motherhood demands that you surrender your body, your career (at least the version of it that you enjoyed pre-kids), your relationship, your friendships, your social life, your house, and the list goes on and on and on…

 

I don’t necessarily mean surrender in a negative way. I’m not saying these things are irrevocably ruined by becoming a mother.

 

Only that motherhood requires that we let go our control of these things. And perhaps this is a life lesson in general, this understanding that we really have no control over anything, despite our desire to feel like we do.

 

Maybe motherhood just speeds up this learning? It shoves it in our faces so that we have only two options.

 

  1. Fight the changes. Fight against ourselves to feel like we have some control.

 

2. Or surrender to the way it all wants to unfold.

 

 

I knew all of this. I’d fought against the surrender for the first two years of becoming a mother. It almost ruined my relationship, my health and it stopped me from enjoying any of it.

 

I’d already surrendered to the regular stuff. I no longer sweated the lack of sleep. Our social life happened, or it didn’t. We weathered the meltdowns and didn’t stress over the small stuff of parenting anymore.

 

But losing my babies was the ultimate lesson in surrender. It was the BIG lesson in learning that really none of us have any control over the time we get in this life, or the time we get with those we love.

 

Losing a baby slams the reality in your face that this minute, right here and now, really is all we ever have. 

 

You can do all the planning you like for the future, but the only choices you actually get to make are in the minute, the second, the millisecond.  And in that millisecond the only real choice you have is over how you feel.

 

You can’t choose what will happen around you.

 

You can’t control anyone else’s behaviour, not even your child’s (as much as we like to think we can).

 

You can’t control the events of the day.

 

At any given moment you can only control how you react and how you feel about the things that happen to you.

 

That’s it.  

 

The truth of this surrender is that our lives are made up entirely of the way we allow ourselves to think and react to what happens to us.

 

It can be a hard fact to swallow, right? 

 

As children we are taught the opposite.

 

We are taught that we can control how our life turns out.

 

We are taught to play by the rules, to work hard, to be kind.

 

We’re taught that if we do all of these things we’ll be rewarded with a  good life.

 

But that’s not actually the truth of it at all.

 

Instead, life is going to present you with a series of events and it’s our job to surrender to the lessons of it all.

 

Some lessons we won’t want to learn.

 

Some will have to be presented to us three, or four, or five times before we finally crack and allow ourselves to think and react in a new and different way.

 

It’s why sometimes it feels like we repeat the same ‘mistakes’ many times over before we can finally move on from a problem or negative pattern in our life.

 

This is why good, loving, kind, hard working people are presented with horrible experiences. Not because any of us have done anything wrong. Not because we’re being punished.  But because we are being asked, or perhaps reminded, that yet again life is about surrender.

 

These unfair experiences are an invitation to return to where life really happens.

 

We’re all being asked to get out of our own heads, to stop planning and trying to control where life is going.

 

We’re are being asked to live our lives here in the present moment.

 

To love from this place here.

 

To be kind in this place here.

 

To make choices from here. Not from feelings about the past or your fears about the future, but right here.

 

We’re being asked to feel our emotions in this place. To choose to be happy in the moments that we have here.

 

I’m not going to lie.

 

It’s not an easy place to live and it’s why we spend so much of our time distracting ourselves with the past or the future.

 

Right here and now is raw and exposed.

 

It is what it is and we can’t hide behind the stories we tell ourselves, no matter how hard we try.

 

But here is the truth of it all and here is all there is.

 

What experiences in your life have asked you to surrender?

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