"Ok. Have a good day.”
“Is everything ok?” Though kind, his words were clipped and short. I could tell something was wrong.
“Yeah, fine. I just have to go, I’m at work”.
Maybe, but it felt like more. What if he was upset with me? What if it was something that involved me in some way? I started to press the issue, to encourage him to divulge what was on his mind, but at the idea of asking more questions and dragging it out into the open, a heavy, oppressive feeling settled over me, diminishing the good mood I’d been in.
“Just let it go,” my little voice told me. “Let him be responsible for his own emotional well being. Let it go and stop creating drama.”
I’d never thought about it that way before… Was I creating drama simply by asking him what was wrong? I was, wasn’t I. Because he was willing to let it go. Because both of us could still hold space and be in a good place, sharing our good mood and conversation, without having to ‘go there’. We didn’t have to talk about what was bothering him, and I didn’t have to give in to my emerging fear.
With that thought I realized how I have perpetuated a pattern of fear, anxiety and drama in my life by doing this very thing. From a place of fear, wondering if someone was displeased with me, at times I have encouraged, pushed and prodded to get them to open up, and in so doing I have held us both in a negative place by engaging in emotionally charged conversations that did not necessarily need to take place.
So instead, I wished him a good day and hung up the phone. “All is well in my world” I reminded myself, and trusted that indeed all was well. If something was so wrong that our entire relationship was going to change over it, then so be it. There was nothing I was going to be able to do about it on my 15 minute drive into work, so I let it go. I am not responsible for his happiness or how he feels, he is. My hanging up and letting go allowed him to do that. If he had issue with me, it was up to him to voice those thoughts, not me to drag them out of him.
It’s hard to let go. We fear what we don’t know. We fear what might be or what may be coming. And holding onto that fear feels like wearing a lead coat. I could feel the freedom of my decision both physically and emotionally. Somehow I literally felt lighter and more buoyant having made it. Emotionally I felt free! I didn’t have to bear the burden of his emotions, nor did I need to bring us both down into the energy of it, starting a conversation, worrying over his outcome or even wondering how I can help.
I was now free to enjoy my day, knowing that if he needed to and when he was ready, he’d let me know what was on his mind. Until then, I had nothing to worry about. That felt good.