Holding on, or letting go? This week I’m taking five minutes with the Five Minute Friday #fmfparty gang to write unedited on a theme sent out by Kate Motaung. The word-prompt today is HOLD.
(You can join in too – here’s how.)
Millions of people this side of the pond have been holding their breaths for the last 12+ hours, as Scotland voted on whether or not to become an independent nation. Some have been anxious all week, some for months. In a momentous vote, we wake this morning to find that there isn’t a new independent country on the world map. But they’ve made their voice heard.
We hold our breaths when we are afraid. We hold our breaths in anticipation. We can’t breathe for hope. We can’t bear to face the future.
What is clear is that in such a tight outcome such as this, there are many, many fiercely disappointed people, who have invested heavily in the hope of a very different kind of governmental future. The society has to find its new way forward: neighbours, factions, through devolution and collaboration, and live alongside people who will need time to process and grieve their shattered dreams.
We hold on too. We know the past – like it or love it, it’s familiar. We hold on to what we know, and we strive toward a future we think we can control. But we too often find ourselves navigating territory we never counted on, and situations we didn’t buy into. We can hold on to our grievances. We can cling to the perfect dreams that will now not be realised. Or, by the grace of God, we can all try to relinquish our own agendas and seek a common future together – which is likely nobody’s perfect choice.
That’s going to take a lot of letting go.
But it’s also going to take a lot of stretching out to take hold of a new common hope. And not letting go until the pains and fears and uncertainties of these past months and hours fade into a more certain future together.