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Let go and the words will come

A few weeks ago, my soon-to-be daughter-in-law asked me to give a toast at her and my son’s wedding this Saturday because in her words, “you’re a writer and good with words.” I thought sure. No problem. I’d be honored.

Then as the days went on and no ideas came except maybe reading a love poem (which would be nice but not very original), I began to panic. How do I gather up the events of our life together—mother and son—in two minutes? How do I convey the meaning of the journey my son and his bride are embarking on?

The more I thought about it, the more overwhelmed I became. I’ve spoken at other events—my graduation, in front of groups of business people, in front of students, at my aunt’s funeral and my mother’s funeral—but I began to doubt I was up for this occasion.

When I get into a panic like this, there’s only one thing I know I can do—let it go. So, I did. And a funny thing happened as I was watering the garden this morning—it all came to me. The words, the gestures, the audience participation, the poem at the end—everything came as if it were a play being acted out in front of me.

I’m reminded again and again that the more I try to force something to come, the more I push it away. When I let go and allow the world to come to me is when the magic happens—whether it’s writing a toast, imagining a character, or earning a living.

Are you stuck somewhere in your life or writing? Ask yourself how you can let it go so it will come back to you.

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. An especially nice post since I’m doing precisely the same thing next Saturday! Have a lovely wedding. Thank you for sharing. Jane

    August 17, 2012
  2. Yes, I understand this. It seems that when I try to press for inspiration it does not come. But when I relax and let go, it always finds me.

    August 19, 2012

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