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hold with high respect and a loose grip

when my whole family was alive, i had a contingency plan.  i don't know if it was just leftover fear from my mom passing away when i was so young, but i knew, if i ever lost all my family and i was the sole survivor i would sell everything, move, and spend a year training for an ironman.  i knew that type of mental and physical dedication would be the only thing able to save me after that type of trauma.

in a way, it's almost more difficult this way.  i am left badly wounded but also with responsibility.  only half my family is gone, the other two are still extremely dependent on me.  i am reading No Mud, No Lotus which is by a buddhist monk.  These are people that practice asceticism, no indulgences.  Most of us look at that and think "geez, that'd be tough, to have nothing" but in a way it is extremely freeing.  Most if not all of our fear, comes from attachments, to our possessions, to our family.  It is easy to be happy if your only attachment is to yourself.  Before I lost Elly, my biggest fear was losing a child.  I honestly thought there would be no way to live through it.  And it's funny because in losing my life in a way, I still have not lost everything.  Every day I have to practice being mindful of fears and attachments- after all, I still have more to lose.

This life is such a practice of high respect and a loose grip.  I can honestly say, it upsets me when I see an insect die.  I always tell Addy and Lane to let them be if they are outside in their environment.  Life is such a unique and fragile aspect, the putting out of a life is never something to be taken lightly- no matter what form it falls into.  Nature never repeats, and so that life will never come again on this earth.

Before all of this, my grip was so tight.  Anxiety, fear, they have taken their toll on me at different times.  About a year before all of this, I was doing well overall, I had realized the non-value of worry and generally spent most of my life with a positive outlook- but my life was also going pretty well.  My grip though, was tight.  My happiness was tied to my family, to my job, to my life.  The tighter we grip, the faster that sand falls.

In losing so much, there is a tendency to cling, to attach as firmly as possible to what is left.  But there is danger in that.  We cannot tie our happiness to this life.  Everything is impermanent.  What is here today is gone tomorrow.

And so with a loose grip, I unfold my hands and accept what is coming.  Breathing in, I acknowledge my breathe, breathing out, I smile.

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