**I originally was going to edit this post, as it was written a couple of weeks ago, but I read it to someone last night and they said, 'No, you need to leave this one raw.' So, here you go.** Acceptance
I’ve written a lot about fighting for things, at all costs, and getting whatever you want, at all costs. Most of my posts in the past three years have focused on how to overcome things, how to move on, how to be strong in the midst of tragedy. While that is all good and well, there is something that I have never written about before —> acceptance. I’ve been in a new season in my life in which a personal situation has not gone as planned. I have followed all of my own advice to keep on fighting for it, to keep on keeping on, as they say. I have lost friends, relationships with certain family members, new client opportunities, sleep and my health, at times, trying to fight so hard for this certain thing that I absolutely could not, cannot, picture my life without.
In the midst of this fight, my all too wise mother has mentioned time and time again that I need to, “Let go”. In fact, her wisdom led me to write my blog post about what I learned most over the past year, and it was to let go and let God. I missed a very important piece until now of the letting go process, and that is accepting some situations as they are. Accepting situations as-is is very hard for someone that is used to defying odds to beat a childhood disease, get out of an abusive marriage and recover from a sister’s death. Although, looking back, maybe acceptance is something that would have benefited me greatly as I struggled to survive consequences completely outside of my control.
I am not perfect, but I intentionally spent a week giving this thing I have been fighting for one more chance. I tore the situation wide open, sat with it, cried with it, yelled at it, prayed to God about it. I dissected every piece of it until I was sure that I had explored absolutely every strategy I could to hold onto it, and, at the end of the week, I failed. In the car, on the way to the airport tonight, I realized that this is one of the first situations I have faced in my life of the upmost importance to me, that I cannot, absolutely cannot save.
In fact, the forces coming at me this week as I tried to salvage it were straight out of a movie. Some were such blatant signs from God, I had to laugh. Yes, God, I hear you. Yes, I get that I need to let go. Thank you very much for the sign you plopped down right in the middle of this road I’m on so I literally cannot take another step down it.
As I got on my flight, I realized something that absolutely breaks my heart, that tears me to my very core in a way nothing quite has —> this is a personal situation that I need to accept, and let God take it from here. If I take another step forward I will for sure lose myself, and even more people in my life that mean everything to me. If I continue putting all of my resources into this fight, without God backing me up, I cannot win. See, that’s part of it, God has dropped these massive hints along the way letting me know He damn well does not support this decision I made at one point in my life.
So, here I am on a flight back to NYC, leaving Florida in a way that I have never left it before. I am literally, and figuratively, leaving a huge part of my heart behind that I know I will never get back. Part of me feels relieved that the fight is finally over, but another part of me wonders how I will even wake up in the morning and take another step without that gigantic piece of my heart I left behind.
Acceptance —> That is how. I am determined to accept this situation in a way I have chosen not to accept other situations before. I am going to move forward, accepting that this was something I was not meant to keep in the long term in my life. I am going to trust God in a way that is hard for me to trust Him, and know that he will open other doors, safer doors, for me in the very near future.
We live in a highly motivated world where we are taught by society that acceptance is ‘giving up’, but it’s the very opposite. It’s intentionally, maturely recognizing things for what they are in life and freeing yourself to move onto more positive, inspirational moments that will feed your soul oh so much. Acceptance is saying, “I trust you, God. I don’t understand Your reasons, I don’t like this situation, I would prefer to keep fighting, but I received Your message loud and clear and I am going to trust that You see something I do not see yet in my future.”
I was listening to a song this week that was about a girl walking away from a relationship and she said she wasn’t sure if she just dodged a bullet or walked away from the greatest love of her life. That’s kind of how acceptance is, isn’t it? There’s a part of you that isn’t truly sure if it’s time to accept the situation yet, but you have to trust that God is dodging a bullet for you that you might not be aware of yet.
One of my greatest struggles was walking away from my college relationship. I hid myself in a cocoon for my last semester, working 40 hour weeks and attending classes full time. I was heart broken. We were supposed to move to NYC together. I was going to work for a PR agency and he was going to go to med school at NYU. Those were our plans. Then, just a few short months before our plan of moving to the city, God slammed that door shut and bolted it with multiple locks. Something happened in our relationship that neither of us would ever, ever be able to recover from. I had to walk away, and I had no idea why God had forced me to give up someone who was so significant in my life, in the future I planned for myself. We were meant to be. I just knew it, and for two years I refused to date anyone else.
I moved to NYC without him, and my life unfolded in a way it never could have if I was in a serious relationship. Unbeknownst to me, he moved to the city a few months after me. Then I moved back to South Florida, and, again, unbeknownst to me, he moved back just three weeks prior. I could not ignore the signs, and neither could he. Once we realized we had mimicked each other’s lives without even having contact with each other, we decided to get back together.
It was then that I realized what God was keeping me from two years prior. My college boyfriend grew into an amazing person, but it was not my person. I had found yoga, meditation and had adopted a new, mature philosophy of being less upset and more understanding towards people who hurt me. I went through my sister committing suicide, my mother having cancer, among a thousand other things. You cannot go through those kind of things and not come out on the other side changed. He found more of himself while living in NYC and loved to go dancing and stay up until all hours of the night. He wanted to spend all of our time getting into clubs in South Beach, or working, which left little time for my yoga and meditation. We grew into two completely different people, something God knew was going to happen when he sent us on our separate paths. After only a few months of reconciliation, we went our separate ways again, this time for good.
The thing is, I know I would have never found my passion for social media marketing, or yoga, or meditation without saying goodbye to him. All three of those things are crucial parts of who I am today. In fact, all of the time I had without him in my life, led me to discover these passions I did not even have time to think about before.
Thinking of this time in my life allows me to feel a little better about this new season of acceptance I am entering. It gives me hope that there are even more incredible journeys waiting for me. I trust God would not rip me away from something that means so much, for nothing.
Yes, I left a huge part of myself behind in Florida tonight, but I also cleaned out room for new things to grow in my life. More time to connect with my family, opportunities to mend relationships that have fallen through the cracks over the past couple of years, and, most importantly, the opportunity to prove to myself and to God that I am more than my circumstances.
- Marji J. Sherman