Here’s an update I’d rather not post. I suppose that’s bound to happen.

I’m sure there’s a book somewhere that says month 5 is worse than month 1, and I’m sure reading it wouldn’t make any difference.

This week I’ve turned into a hateful angry person. I’ve blown up at home multiple times. Everything Heather says hits me wrong. I’m embarrassed that my kids have seen me this way. Not to mention Heather and probably some neighbors.

I feel myself becoming someone I dislike and don’t respect. And it feels like there’s nothing I can do about it. Just like I can’t do anything about the weather. Or Olivia. It’s all just sort of taking its course. I have such an extremely uncomfortable sense of no-control.

For the past couple of years I’ve been waiving the flag of “Fear is the enemy” and I’ve been fighting Fear on a daily basis. I think I’ve done pretty well at it. But I feel like the battle has shifted for me, and it shifted without me noticing. Control is my new enemy, or the desire for control.

I just want to feel a sense of having a handle on something. Anything. I want to feel like something is controlled. Preferable under my control.

I’ve been drawn to researching music gear even more than usual lately, and I think this explains why. It’s something for me to control. And with better tools, I have the impression of controlling my work that much better.

I’ve felt the need for our house to be clean, even more than usual. I think that’s the same thing. It’s something controllable which makes me feel incrementally better.

I’ve been more on top of practice and exercise than ever. Something I can control.

But despite the amount of care I put into these things, they are relatively unimportant things to me. Much less important to me than things like Olivia’s life, our other kids’ health, my health, my career, Heather’s words… the things most important to me… the things I have absolutely no control over.

So I grab onto the things I can control. But it’s not working. Deep down I know I didn’t have what it took. I couldn’t save Olivia. I can’t protect my kids from everything. I can’t make Heather respect me. The reality is that I’m out of control.

I hate the feeling. But I think I’m making the battle about the wrong thing. The exact wrong thing. I can’t be concerned with regaining a sense of control. I must be concerned with accepting the reality of my situation - and the situation is, and has always been, I am not in control.

I am not in control.

I think rest is on the other side of accepting the truth of that fact- that while we can control some things, the most important things to us are all outside of our control. Maybe that’s why they’re so valuable to us - we know they’re only ours because they are being given - we know we never could have taken them for ourselves.

Is the battle shifting, or am I just experiencing a new facet of the same fight? Fear is becoming less of the issue. It’s there. It’s not helping anything but I can’t get rid of it either. I can’t not be afraid. I can pretend, but that’s about it. But what if I can be ok with that? What if I can allow Fear to be there, give it that freedom, without my normal response.

My normal response to Fear is control. What if instead I chose to respond by the opposite; by letting go? Wouldn’t that take away all of Fear’s power?

Monday August 29, 2016