There are many instances when P and I say with great exasperation to C, "You've got to let it go." C, for all of his incredible gifts, is not, shall we say, a 'flexible' child and we are not talking about his physical ability to get into many a yoga pose (he can!). No, C is not easygoing. He has a strong sense of justice. He knows the *right* way to do something. And if someone breeches C's sense of rightness or justice, he notices immediately and it bugs him-- a lot. He does not like to be wrong. He does not like it when he is the one to make a mistake or not get it on the first try. Can you see some perfectionist tendencies here? Ultimately, when C feels slighted or if he perceives someone is doing something the incorrect way, C cannot let it go. He holds on ever so tightly to that wrong, that slight, that error and mentions it over and over. He's an amazingly sweet and generous fellow, but C cannot let things go.
This is my first week back at full-time (PAYING) work in three years. For two nights in a row, I could not sleep. I fell asleep without counting too many sheep, but during those nights, I was awoken (ahem, F!) in the wee hours and suddenly my brain started churning-- over and over-- keeping me awake for the rest of my much-needed sleep period. I kept thinking about (dumb) things I said at work, about a mistake I was sure I had made that would cost the organization money, about all the things I need to learn that could potentially be hard for me to learn. I tried quieting my brain, talking myself out of the churning, emptying all thoughts, but frankly, I suck at meditation. So as I dragged my sleep-deprived body across the street and over the bridge on my walk to work this morning, I suddenly made the connection. Oh, letting it go. Yup, I have an extremely difficult time with that as well.
Next time I have the urge to tell C to "let it go already," I will stop. I will breathe. I will respect that he has a churning brain. I will acknowledge his feelings and gently try to nudge him towards a sense of calm in imperfection: others', his own, and his mother's.