A week before the wedding, the stress laid heavy on my soul. I needed a break. I decided to take a ATV ride out into the woods behind our house. I steered the heavy machine down the remains of an old logging road that runs through the property. The muddy track slopes downward before flattening out. At the bottom, I rocked the key back and the engine shuddered out.
After pulling the heavy helmet off, my thoughts drifted to the house. So much of my time was consumed trying to save it. Without us, my father planned to sell. The last remnant of my childhood would be slipping away. The possibility brought out painful emotions. When we took the house on I was willing to do anything to hold onto it.
But holding on made me tired. It stripped away my financial security. It caused misunderstandings that strained relationships. It led to depression and unhappiness. Yet still I wanted to hold on, to continue to struggle. Ashamed that I couldn’t make things work, I didn’t want to let go.
All of this was on my mind as I sat in the woods. Perched on the top of the ATV, silently, I looked over the property. The sinking sun cast a deep yellow light over the woods. The Fall was just beginning to take hold, tinges of color here and there in the canopy. All around me trees rose up, reaching into the light blue sky. It was a lot to lose, I thought quietly.
“Its a big world out there,” A little voice in my head murmured, “ What if by staying here you are missing out on something better?”
I wasn’t sure where the thought came from. until that moment, I had been so resistant to change. I wasn’t willing to face possibility that the house would not work out. Without warning, my thinking had shifted. My I realized that no matter what happened, things would work out. Nothing can hold change at bay. The best we can do is face it with open minds and good attitudes.
In that moment, I let go of the past and readied myself to move forward. I felt free.