When I first wrote this blog post I was dealing with a lot of worry. I worried that I wasn’t going to ever know financial stability, I worried that my life would never be what I wanted it to be, I worried that I would live my life alone, I worried about everything I hoped or dreamed would be unfulfilled. Basically I worried about everything. My remedy, or what I thought was the remedy, was to remind myself of the Reiki Principles of Mikao Usui, namely not to worry. When I contemplated how to handle my worries I ended up taking a rather over-simplistic view.
At the time I attributed much of my worry to idea I wasn’t willing to surrender. Given how I’m a person who doesn’t surrender (or at least not without a fight) I knew trying to learn how would prove quite the challenge. What I’ve learned instead was the difference between surrender as submission and surrender as release. When most people think of “surrender” they think of submission in some fashion. I thought the idea of surrendering was an act of submission, and sometimes it can be. I know that the past year has taught me about the act of surrendering as a form of release.
I’ll admit I haven’t been in a happy place mentally or emotionally for some time. As I look back on my blog posts I’ve seen it bubble to the surface. I was completely in a living situation I never wanted to revisit and surrounded by extremely unsupportive people, though I believed otherwise. I’m sure the same could be said about me while those parties in question truly believe they were supportive. I saw otherwise when I set out to start my own business. I researched everything I could think of to learn, I looked into what regulations by which I needed to abide, and even how much money I would need to start my venture. I started to ask my friends who ran their own businesses, and the truth stared me down. One I had put much trust into offered to “buy me out” despite her cries of how I need to be independent. Sometime later we had a long conversation about her offer and other offers where I mentioned my concern about how it seemed contrary to my “quest” to be independent.
“We’re all dependent on someone to some degree,” is how she responded. Even though I agree with this sentiment in a normal circumstance, given the conversation it unsettled me. I worried about the implications and what to do. I performed a Tarot reading for myself, and it told me what I knew I had to do, but wasn’t ready to do: let go. I stayed a little bit longer until she tried to humiliate me in front of her friends. I blew up and ended the friendship. In that moment of my ego I finally let go of the friendship that was damaging me.
When I first wrote this blog post I had it in my mind that my ego was the cause of not surrendering. I used a passage from a book at that time. I have a different view now of the passage from Dona G. Kelly, author of Lotus Leaves, with the passage about surrender I used:
If you feel that you cannot give up your free will- the right to make your own decisions- then, you still have residue of Ego, which is part of the personality. The Masters lay great stress upon the need for self-surrender […] Surrender is not easy, nor can it be achieved through a miracle. It is a slow, painstaking, labor of Love.
Not surrendering may still be an act of Ego, but I don’t feel that’s anything to shun right now. I still believe it’s a long process that requires lots of love. More often than not it’s been self-love. I had to love myself enough to no longer tolerate sick behavior.
I had to love myself enough to know this woman would hold our mutual friends emotionally hostage and that I would lose friends in this process. It hurt to see her expect my friends (it’s been a year and I’m still hearing from friends about this situation) to “rescue me” even though she claimed I seek that and chided me for it. All I’ve done is all I can do: speak my side when asked, cast spells to sever our ties, prayers, and protect myself. After a year of diligence I’m almost free.
In the span of that year I worried about many things. When I paid my doctor a visit for an ear infection I got an eye opener: my resting heart rate was through the roof. She examined me to the best of her ability and I spoke with her about what was on my mind. I was blessed in my doctor also held a degree in psycho-medince. We came to the conclusion it was the stress from my worry and some underlying mental health issues. All the stress I put on myself from worry (and later I learned the product of my mental illness) took its toll on my heart. I had to pull myself together or these things would be the death of me.
I finally sought help through both a therapist and my own research into my diagnoses. Each time I saw something that endorsed feeling whatever I’m feeling and not fight it. While I wasn’t surrendering to the attack itself, I was submitting to the idea of having one. No more could I fight the attack, but to pull alongside it and feel what I needed to feel. My partner understood and has been one of many ways for me to submit to my attack. I’ve also developed other ways of handling my impending worry from awareness and tackling the causes of my worry to seeking a creative outlet for it when solutions aren’t apparent. My writing, painting, drawing, calligraphy, and now scrapbooking help me release. I know tackling my worry is still a work in progress, but now I have more experience and insight with it. More than anything, what has been important for tackling my worry was to submit to a routine. In this routine I approach my shrine with offerings, time with Het-Hert, and sometimes my worry. I submit to Her and to Her I give my worries. I pray for help when I need it, and sometimes I pray as a form of gratitude. I surrender to Het-Hert.
In the span of those years since I first posted about surrendering my worry and thus my ego I’ve learned quite a bit. I’ve learned there are times that I shouldn’t ignore my ego but should also understand why I worry. I’ve also learned there are different types of surrender and sometimes I must consciously choose which type in order to tackle my worry. Most importantly I’ve learned surrender isn’t a loss of will but understanding the limitations of my own. When I looked over my older blog post on this topic I smirked at the last lines I wrote:
In these times, while we feel there is much to worry about, can also prove more fruitful. These times can become a great opportunity for our nation, or at least our communities, to grow in a healthy way. All we need is faith in the forces at work as well as our own.