I would lay there under my pink and green gingham canopy bed fearful that in the middle of the night my body may actually forget to breathe. Well, either that or aliens would suck me right out of my bright pink walled bedroom into that chamber of light. I would never see my puppy again. Yeah, I spent waaaaay too much time in the “real mysteries” section of the library. These were the days of tracking Bigfoot, Nessie and other mysteries of the unknown across the Dewey decimal system.
But that very basic fear still lives inside me, 30+ years later. Today however, I’ve come to realize that this fear of breathing and the inability to “catch my breath” is ultimately the fear of letting go.
“If I exhale, I may forget how to breathe.” … raises a feeling of inadequacy
“If I exhale, my breath may not ever return” … becomes a feeling of abandonment.
“If I exhale, I may not ever find the breath again” …creates a feeling of loss.
“If I exhale, it will show I’m not strong enough to hang on” …brings about the toxic feeling of failure.“
None of this is true! These are all just the stories our monkey brain is feeding us. In our most challenging moments of letting go of love, relationships, the past, our ego, our insecurities ultimately come face to face with our strengths, our resilience, our self worth. Nothing is more powerful than that!
And our bodies? They’re genetically programmed to breathe for us so our brains don’t need to focus time and energy worrying about a non-issue. Perhaps then, if this is the case…ALL THIS fret and anxiety about “letting go” is really just one over-exaggerated exhale.