There is a recurring theme in my life; holding on for one reason or another to things, stuff, and relationships. It’s been difficult to get to the bottom of this tendency because more often than not, emotion clouds good judgement.
I have moved home 6 times in the past 8 years, chasing my 2 daughters cross country and trying to keep up with the tumultuous changes that have marked this period of my life. Each time I have carried a large household of possessions and pieces of furniture around with me, notwithstanding the bonsai collection. At times I put my overflow of belongings into storage if the property I lived in was too small.
I tried to manufacture space or find places for things that didn’t necessarily fit. I squeezed it in, and in so doing couldn’t create a space that ultimately made me happy. There was always a feeling that I was split, and that somehow Richard couldn’t be Richard. But I didn’t seem to be able to let go of anything.
Living alone for 6 years, I still have never let go of the idea of sharing a home with a special person in my future.
I held onto the past as a basis for a future that I yearned for. Thus losing the present.
Somehow Richard became defined by the things and the circumstances.
I hung on for varied but all emotive reasons; sentimental value, the scarcity of the belonging – like an antique, the potential use of an item, or poverty consciousness – will I ever be able to replace it. The most important reason however was that I had already lost so much in my life.
At times I guess it has been challenging to have to admit that I have become a hoarder. And because of that I have spent much time attempting to understand the emotional and intellectual reasoning for this tendency.
I have come to understand that it is simply this; I have a fear of loss.
A fear that prevents me from moving forward unencumbered. What if I need that one thing that I let go of? What if I cannot replace it? What if I never find it again?
And so too, I have come to realise that I have that very same tendency with relationships. To the point that I damage myself by hanging on. And the reasons are identical; a fear of loss and all that that manifests within me.
The certainty of what I have is a lesser evil than the uncertainty of something that I don’t have. And so I hold on. Loss seems to be an unbearable option.
But if I am not happy, I have nothing anyway.
The emotion that is inextricably linked to the relationship is the greatest problem. Love of that person no matter how my love is returned or isn’t, and the inability to love myself enough to let go once I have recognized the destructive weight of the relationship, all make it extremely hard to let go. Fear controls me.
I am about to move again, hopefully my last in a long time. I intend to get rid of anything that I do not have a use for right now, as well as all those things that serve no positive purpose in my life. No matter how much I might love them.
Holding on is a destructive energy, and it prevents us from moving forward. It keeps us stuck in the past, and holds us in a limbo that resists freedom.
I am moving forward alone and free. Scared, but free. I choose to make myself a priority by not holding onto the things that negatively impact my life. I choose to let go, and face my fears head on.