Letting Go

There came a point in my life quite a while ago when I realized that I could endure life and get to the end, or I could live it, moment to moment.  I think many people endure life and miss out on the magic.  I often work with people who, for many years, have just stuck at what they hate so that they can get to retirement and then enjoy life.    
 
That’s great, if you see what you are choosing and decide you want the magic.  Trouble is if you do not make that change, and continue to ‘stick at it’, you do not fully live for over two-thirds of your life.  By the time you get to that last third, (if you’re lucky!), you are so exhausted from the slog of life with no magic, that it all feels too late. 
 
Since this realization, life has been a little like a roller coaster.  That is the magic.  I am alive to both the ecstatic joys and the black times of sadness.  To enjoy the magic you need both.  You can go through life on a flat-line — no highs, no lows, — but that is like a living death.  Life is supposed to have both highs and lows. Without a low, you would not even know the highs when they came along.  The magic of life is when we allow ourselves to ride the big dipper.   
 
Personally, for me, this is a funny analogy because I actually hate roller coasters. My partner loves them.  Many years ago, we were at one of the biggest amusement parks in Spain and she went on the corkscrew roller coaster.  She came off with the biggest smile on her face, saying, “You have to ride it! It’s wonderful!” For some reason, in that moment, I got caught up by her enthusiasm and gaily got strapped into the ride.   
 
It was awful! 
 
But – and this is the huge but — it taught me a huge lesson, because after I got off and complained loudly how awful it was, she asked, “Did you let go?”  
 
“Let go, let go?” I replied. “Are you crazy?” 
 
“Nope,” she said.  “The magic of the roller coaster is to let go and allow yourself to go with the ride.  If you hold on, you are bumped around all over the place. When you let go, that’s when the fun starts.” 
 
That’s when the ‘ah-ha’ happened.  I suddenly saw that I had been holding on.  Holding onto the harness on the roller coaster, but also the harness of life in general.  I had been trying to ensure a ‘safe passage’.  When we do this, we stop the magic. If we only have one way of getting to the end, getting to the result, we do not see what else life has to offer us.  We get tunnel visioned and the best of the fun and opportunity — the magic — might be just beside us as we walk straight by. 
 
We need to be open to the magic, to allow it to give us even more than we have set our intention for.  We need to let the fun in.