My black lab Layla is unrelenting when it comes to her daily walk. This routine starts with my very first stirring of the morning as I roll over to check the clock. If she had her way, she would be collared, leashed and on her way out the front door as soon as one of my feet hit the floor. She is not concerned with my need to move slowly as my muscles awaken from their lack of movement, or that this body needs COFFEE before even considering getting dressed.
The day was starting out pretty close to perfect as I took care of my morning necessities. I decided on the neighborhood for our walk this day with its mature tree-lined pathways, lots of shrubs, and other neighbors walking their dogs. This would mean Layla would be on leash, which she doesn’t mind (although, truth be told, she does prefer wandering the hills of tall grass, playing her favorite game of seek the ball).
As we walk, she insists on pawing her way through the juniper and ivy, any place a ball could be hiding. She has quite a sense of smell for rubber and often will find a partial ball, even an old tennis shoe and joyfully do the happy dance for her slimy souvenir.
On this particular day, she found a ball fairly quickly so the game was on. I usually kick it for her because she loves to chase it – even if it only goes 6 inches. As I continued walking, she stopped for me to do the honors as she waited in her pounce position. I kicked the ball, but with a bit too much force as it traveled about 8 to 10 feet across the grass. She, without considering that we were attached, charged after the ball, yanking the leash in my hand and dragging me down to the ground before I even knew what had happened.
At the instant the leash ran out of length, I felt my neck snap; my shoulder pulled slightly out of its socket as I tried to steady myself for the intense tug I knew would follow. I felt the muscles in the back of my thigh rip as the force yanked me down to the ground onto my knees and hands, both of which were scraped as I skidded across the wet grass.
At first, I was stunned and didn’t know what to do. I wasn’t sure if I should cry from the pain and shock or attempt to stand, laughing at how silly this whole thing was. There was a woman standing in front of me who witnessed the whole incident. She didn’t say anything, but I could tell by her eyes that she was asking me if I was okay.
I gingerly got to my feet as the pain immediately set in. I knew I was not going to enjoy the walk home and sensed that there would be ice packs in my immediate future.
I limped home and proceeded to set myself up on the couch with the ice. Once I was as comfortable as I was going to be, I started to wonder, “WHY?” Why had this happened? I was having a great day, everything seemed to be going my way and – WAMMO – I had really hurt myself. This feeling took over as I continued to try to figure out why this thing, this interruption in all my bliss, had occurred. Suddenly, my whole perception of the day had changed as my pride had also been bruised along with my body.
The next day, I decided to attempt a much shorter walk, this time without the dog. I am not one to stay down for long and craved sunshine and fresh air.
As I was walking home, a revelation struck me like a bolt of lightning. In that very moment, I realized that, in my desperation to hold onto the leash the day before, I had forgotten that I had a choice. I had the choice to let go, and I didn’t. If I had let go, there would have been no accident, no bruises, and no embarrassment of being yanked down to my knees at the mercy of a dog.
In my moment of clarity, I realized that this was Spirit’s way of allowing me to experience firsthand an example of the many ways in life in which we hold on way too tightly – too tightly to relationships, to money, to things, to our ideas, to… I suddenly knew why this had happened…it all made sense to me now. I was amazed at the synchronicity of this orchestration– as if Spirit had laid it out well in advance for me to learn the significance of this painful lesson.
I don’t think that letting go needs to be as uncomfortable or unpleasant as we can make it. My personal experience of this painful lesson taught me that gripping something too tightly, trying to remain in control, cuts off the natural flow of inertia.
Like most people, you probably understand inertia as a lack of movement. I looked it up: The law of physics defines inertia as “the property of matter by which it retains its state of rest or its velocity along a straight line so long as it is not acted upon by an external force.” My hanging on instead of letting go was the “external force” that interrupted the flow.
This lesson demonstrated to me in a profound way that the laws of physics should not be tampered with – in nature or otherwise.
In this instance, I have become very conscious of how I have been manipulating and pushing things along to happen as I see fit or have planned out. Each time I find myself losing my patience, and forcing things along, I am brought back to this experience, reminding me to let go. Reminding me that my job is to create the dream or desire with my intention, send it out into the universe and let the Great Creator, the Divine, shape its manifested form.
Partnering with a higher power to co-create your deepest desires or assist you with your biggest challenges, not only takes the pressure off, it also allows for the mystery of life to unfold as it will.
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