The tension between manifestation and letting go

As transfer day approaches (ten days away) I am becoming increasingly aware of the tension between manifestation and letting go.

I do all that I can toward manifestation of the outcome that I want, and then I try to hold my attachment to that outcome as lightly as I possibly can.

This is not an easy thing to do, and sometimes the strain of embodying and living through this paradox creates actual physical tension in my body and confusion in my mind. On those days, I can’t wait until evening when I can flop down on the couch in DH’s arms and watch a movie and turn my brain and body off as much as possible. Other days, like today, I feel no tension but a sense of focus and clarity, a sense that I am doing all that I possibly can, a sense of having created the most harmonious situation I possibly can, a sense that leads me to relax my grip on outcome. I volley back and forth between these two modes of being.

But I’ve been doing one specific thing lately that has been helping with the tension.  I’ve been looking closely at the sensation I automatically call “anxiety.” The other day, I sat down and wrote about it. “Is this anxiety? What is anxiety? What does it feel like?” Well, anxiety is the hum under the surface that rears up and makes me burst into tears with a GHI customer service rep or panic when it seems that our refrigerator has stopped working–until it clicks back on and I sheepishly apologize to DH for freaking out “but this is not the week for me to be without a refrigerator”…and then I realize that I’ve totally created a panic situation out of nothing because some part of me wants to externalize whatever is humming inside. It wants voice.

But at other times, when I stop to analyze the feeling, I recognize that the actual physical sensation—-in my chest, in my throat, in my groin—is not always unpleasant. There’s a tickle-tingle that I can call “anticipation” and “excitement” and “eagerness.” An eagerness to bring my babies home to my uterus, to see them up on the ultrasound screen, to feel them growing inside me. So when I focus on the tickle-tingle, and I call it “excitement” or one of those other more positive words, the anxious-pinched part seems to fall off, leaving just the pleasure-part. Some days, like today, it’s easy to do. At others, it’s close to impossible, but I force myself to do it a little anyway. With practice, it gets easier.

I think this is the nitty-gritty of what all the Buddhist teachings, Byron Katie texts, Conversation with God books, Yoga Sutras, and various CBT/DBT texts are talking about…it’s difficult to draw all of those thinkers’ words into a unified philosophy in words, but perhaps not so difficult to do through actions. What it all comes down to is finding ways to let go, even while pursuing manifestation of the life you want.

This morning, as I opened my eyes in bed, my children talked to me. All they did was say hello, but it was pure wonderful. Then someone else came in and said to me: “Your children are going to blow your mind. They will be very hilarious and creative little creatures and they will make you laugh so hard.”

My therapist said that she believes we can manifest anything we want in life—“We just can’t control the timeline.” This made sense to me. Part of learning to let go of outcome is accepting that particular limitation. So I can say, with full heart and unadulterated belief, that I will meet my children. There they are, right there, speaking to me. I can’t control the timeline of when I see their physical bodies, but they are already there.

This is another one of those exploratory posts at the end of which I’m not sure if I’ve made any sense, but am gonna put it out there anyway. Now: off to the woods for a long walk while listening to the brilliant Jim O’Rourke—am currently obsessed with “94 The Long Way.” I will post soon about other music I’ve been blissing out on recently: Krishna Das, Harold Budd, Cass McCombs, Biblio. And of course Carole King and Joni Mitchell. Happy day to all y’all.

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25 Comments

  1. I love this and I love you. You’re always so in touch with your feelings and have the most descriptive words to write about them. I always have these feelings but can never write those words that you wrote that describe so vividly how one feels. Have a great walk !

    Reply
    • Taking me in some of that love and sending waves of it back to you! Really, what a nice way to open a comment. Makes me feel deeply cared for. I’m glad now that I tried to describe this particular thing. And my walk was one of the best I’ve had yet—I danced in a snow-field, like a crazy person, and actually jogged through the snow, I had so much energy. This is what sleeping 8 hours a night for weeks and eating good food will do for a person. (:

      Reply
  2. You know I’m on a parallel journey of letting go while manifesting so I get what you’re doing and saying, but I need to state clearly: This post makes *perfect* sense to me. You will meet your children. It feels weird to say I’m so proud of you (for reasons I haven’t thought through) yet, simply and truly, I am. You’re beaming awesomeness, pure and simple. I hope you meet those kidlets soon, but know you will be so in love no matter when it happens.

    Reply
    • Awww thank you thank you. It’s such a lovely heartfelt thing to say, that you feel that pride for me. Your recent post inspired me to finally dedicate a post to an exploration of this, and I’m glad it makes sense. Sometimes I just start typing and see what comes out, because some of the ideas and understandings are really big, as in it takes lifetime(s) to synthesize. Anyway, I’m so excited for everything, really and truly. I’m ready!

      Reply
      • That’s funny, my post was written just like that – fingers clicking away at keys until I realized I was not living in accordance with my beliefs and values (I wasn’t letting go or touching lightly at all, I had a death-grip on expectation and outcome). Stream of consciousness writing (or whatever we call these posts) reminds me a little of hypnosis and chanting meditation – sometimes you arrive someplace new and may not have noticed where you were headed when the journey began!

        Keeping the positive energy channel directed at you tuned to high frequency. Wishing you both so much luck.

        Reply
  3. Praying for you!

    Reply
  4. I’m glad you put it out there! I think blogs are a great place for our thoughts – even if we haven’t exactly sorted them out ourselves yet!

    Reply
  5. AndiePants

     /  March 4, 2014

    My partner told me, early in our relationship, that anxiety is excitement without breath. Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to rethink anxiety and its been very helpful for me in navigating this journey.

    Reply
  6. Treyton

     /  March 4, 2014

    Lots of prayers to you. I will soon be taking the same journey as you, and have all the same emotions. It’s a scary path of a lot of unknowns, but have faith and when you hold that special angel in your arms, rember how badly you wanted it and how far you wen to have it. God bless.

    Reply
    • Blessings back to you! The unknowns are something I’ve struggled with for a long time—I remember one time when I was an adolescent really really wanting a particular watch for Christmas. I couldn’t stand the tension so actually snagged the box that I thought contained it and unwrapped it in the bathroom. Sure enough, it was the watch. I rewrapped the box and put it back under the tree. I have come a long way since then! Anyway, best of luck on your journey.

      Reply
  7. Clare

     /  March 4, 2014

    We have the same taste in tunes! Especially Jim O’Rourk, Harold Budd & Joni. That’s amazing! Good taste girl!
    For me anxiety feels more like dread and it lives in the pit of my stomach. I don’t think I’d be able to transform it to anticipation/excitement like you can. I always pay attention to that physical feeling though when it arises. The most important thing is breath I think… Sometimes I notice I’m literally holding my breath or it’s very shallow. Then it’s like holding onto the feeling at the same time rather than letting go.

    Reply
    • No way! That *is* amazing. When I wrote “Harold Budd” I had the thought: No one’s gonna know who I’m talking about. But you do! So cool. We should share playlists. What about Mouse on Mars? Stars of the Lid? Vangelis? Yes: Joni. She’s pure gold. One of the few things about my husband that bothers me is that he doesn’t like Joni—it, like, *offends* me somehow. “How can you not love this?” I ask him, turning up the volume on All I Want. “How? How?”

      Reply
      • Clare

         /  March 6, 2014

        I’ll have to check those out! I know Mouse on Mars, but never really delved into them. Hubby informs me that Vangelis did the soundtrack for Blade Runner which makes me think he’ll be totally up my alley.
        My suggestion for you is Arthur Russel. I adore him. I think you’ll like his albums Another Thought and World of Echo.

        Reply
        • You rule. I’m gonna put Arthur Russel on spotify right now. Yes the blade runner trilogy is fantastic! Sometimes he can get corny , but I skip those parts.

          Reply
        • Am sitting here listening to Arthur Russell’s album/soundtrack Keep The Lights On on Spotify with big grin. Lovely. Thank you for the rec!

          Reply
        • And as I listen I feel like I would be remiss if I didn’t mention: Bonnie Prince Billy/Palace Brothers. Amazing. You probably know it already.

          Reply
  8. Kali

     /  March 4, 2014

    Exactly what I needed to read today. It’s been a downward spiral the last three weeks and I was wondering how I could bring hope and manifesting back into my life and mind.

    Thank you, as usual.

    Reply
    • You’re welcome, Kali. I’m very sorry you’re going through the spiral through the dark place…just do what you can to climb out, bit by bit.

      Reply
  9. Wow this post resonates with me,! Manifestation and letting go of the timeline are two of my biggest focuses right now. I find it so bizarre that you have to disconnect from the outcome for your desires to happen. It’s challenging but i also believe that we will have our own children one day. I just don’t know when.

    Reply
    • Exactly. It IS bizarre! the older I get, the more I realize that life is a paradox, and wisdom comes from being able to live fully not in black *or* white but in black *and* white. I believe you’ll have your family one day, too.

      Reply
  10. NotSoNewtoIVF

     /  March 5, 2014

    It is such a hard balance to walk but know what you mean about the excitement of this bit. I always feel that, although tough, the 2ww is a bit of a holiday from the general sadness of IF xx

    Reply
  11. I love Jim O’Rourke! Theres hell in hello but more in goodbye is one of my faves… keep strong, you’ll get there x

    Reply

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