Let go or not to let go...
"I’m reminded of a story I once heard about a young princess who was known across the land for her beauty, her poise, and her grace. Her constant warm smile and the sparkle of kindness in her eyes inspired her fellow villagers. Every morning the princess took a swim across a placid lake as many of those who were comforted and uplifted by her gathered near the shore. On one very special morning, the princess stepped into the lake and began to glide across the water with lightness and ease. The villagers watched the princess as if in a dream—until they noticed a change that snapped them to attention. As the princess neared the end of her swim, her bliss and confidence seemed to falter, and her body began to look heavy, weighted, and weak. Her admirers could see that something was wrong. Concerned, one of the older wise women who were sitting on the bank remembered the rock that the princess always wore dangling from her wrist. Although she didn’t understand why the princess wore this rock, she hadn’t questioned her about it. After all, she was a princess.
The wise woman, in her old, craggy voice, yelled out to the princess, “Drop the rock! Maybe it’s the rock that’s pulling you down!” The others joined in, shouting in unison, “Drop the rock!” By this time the princess was disappearing under the water for seconds at a time, but each time she was able to kick her way back up to the surface, sputtering for breath as she broke through. However, she was now sinking as much as she was swimming. She could hear the loud cries from the villagers on the shore: “Drop the rock and you will glide again! Drop the rock and you will be free!” As the princess heard their urgent pleas, her attention went to the rock hanging from her wrist, and she noticed the burden of its weight. As her body was pulled down into the water yet again, she remembered her grandfather handing her this rock when she was a young child. He told her she was to carry it to remind her that her duty was to serve the people and protect her kingdom from the enemy across the wall, who would always be looking to harm them. Her grandfather told her, “Never let go of this. With this in your hand, you have the magic to protect your people.”
The young princess, gulping for air as she was being pulled down into the water again, looked incredulously at the rock hanging from her wrist. She had worn this rock with great conviction and couldn’t believe that it could have anything to do with her struggle today, since she had been swimming with the rock every day since she was five years old. As she struggled for longer periods of time, she could hear the many different voices chanting over and over again, “Let go! Drop the rock. Drop the rock.” Between her gasps for breath, she called back to them in a soft, almost inaudible voice, “I can’t. It’s mine . . .” ~ An excerpt from the book "Courage" by Debbie Ford ~