The current time we are living in is surreal. We are facing uncertainty about what is to come. During these times it can be helpful to view life as a freefall and increase our awareness and intentionality. Jackie Pack shares some ideas about how we can do this as well as a worksheet for you to determine what needs to fall in and what needs to fall out of your life at this time.
TRANSCRIPT: How to Live and Cope with Uncertainty
Hi everyone, welcome to Thanks for Sharing. I’m your host, Jackie Pack. The state of our world right now feels quite surreal, and I feel so bad that so many of us are suffering as we face a hopefully once-in-a-lifetime global pandemic. I hope that you are all doing what you can for yourselves and those in your life to stay safe and healthy. I decided to do an episode today talking about how we’re all coping with the COVID-19 virus, and maybe some ideas about how we can deal with uncertainty. Humans dislike uncertainty in most situations, but some deal with it better than others. There are numerous studies that link high intolerance of uncertainty to anxiety and anxiety disorders, including obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, PTSD, and even eating disorders. Now I wanted to talk about some things in this episode may be different than some of the articles or things that you’re hearing about this time and how to deal with COVID-19. I think we all know that it’s good to limit our intake of media, that it’s good to be taking care of our body and drinking lots of water, making sure we’re eating healthy and intentionally and that we’re continuing with some type of normal exercise routine, and then getting some good sleep. Those are kind of the trifecta for health. Also in this it’s important to make time to relax and to be able to talk to people about what you’re feeling and to have people who will listen and to also listen to others. It’s also important to take appropriate precautions to keep yourself healthy—washing your hands regularly, avoid touching your face, and avoid contact with people you know to be sick, and then the last one I think is about remaining hopeful, and that’s kind of where I want to focus today and talk about what this state can mean, and I’m going to use a couple of stories to do that.
Now several years ago, I was introduced to Joseph Campbell as a writer and I listened to his interview with Bill Maher and really became fascinated with some of his work and the writing. Unfortunately, Joseph Campbell is no longer with us, but one of these quotes, it’s actually from his life’s work and his book “Sukhavati” I think is how you say it, and he says this: “We’re in a freefall into future. We don’t know where we’re going. Things are changing so fast and always when you’re going through a long tunnel, anxiety comes along, and all you have to do to transform your Hell into a paradise is to turn your fall into a voluntary act. It’s a very interesting shift of perspective, and that’s all it is. Joyful participation in the sorrows, and everything changes.” Now I’ve been intrigued by that quote since I read it, and this idea of freefall. I think what he says at the beginning of that quote “We’re in a freefall into future. We don’t know where we’re going.” That accurately describes where we are right now in our world and how most of us are feeling. There’s a lot of uncertainty about what’s to come, and so it makes me think about this idea of freefall. Often I will talk with clients when something big or something major, maybe it was unexpected, maybe it was expected but then it got bigger than what was expected, and I’ll talk to them about this is a freefall time. Now the good news about freefall is that a lot of change can happen quickly, and that’s not a bad thing. Sometimes this happens when clients get laid off from their job or fired and they didn’t see that coming. It can happen with a health diagnosis. It can happen with a divorce. It can happen with a lot of different things, working with sex addiction and betrayal trauma, for a lot of partners they feel like this discovery of betrayal and sex addiction kind of thrusts them into a freefall and they didn’t have a chance to make a choice in that. They just found themselves in freefall, and so often I will say to clients, you know, take advantage of this time. Yes, it’s uncertain. Yes, most of us do not like periods of uncertainty, but there may be some good things coming just around the corner, and the purpose of freefall is to get things to fall out of your life and for things to fall into your life, and usually this happens in some bigger-than-normal and some ways that can make us feel quite unsettled.
So often I will ask clients, I want you to make a list during this time period of things that you would want to fall into your life right now, and I usually start with that. Sometimes people it makes more sense for them to start with things that need to fall out of my life, and that’s okay too. I want you to make both lists, so I will say make a list of things that you want to fall into your life. These can include things like clarity. This can include things like a sense of purpose, maybe it’s things like valuing myself or making time for myself. It might be things like a healthy relationship or a friendship. It could also be things like financial stability. All these kinds of things can be things that we want to fall into our life, and they’re good things to fall into our life. On the other hand, we need to look at what in my life do I need to let fall out during this time? And the thing about things that are falling out, sometimes it makes a lot of sense to us and we’re like of course I want this toxic relationship to fall out of my life, or of course I want this unending stress that I live with to fall out of my life, and yet it hasn’t yet, and so we have to kind of look at what purpose has it been serving, and if it’s like a “well, duh” kind of reaction to of course I want this out of my life, why hasn’t it already?
So years ago I was reading a book and I want to say that it was by Anne Lamott, and I’ve tried to Google it and make sure that I’m attributing it right to Anne Lamott, and I can’t find it for the life of me on Google and in a Google search, and I do not have the time to go back and read the books that I’ve read by Anne Lamott to say that yes for sure and to verify that it is by her, but I’m pretty sure that’s who I read this from, and so it’s a story… Anne Lamott is a pastor. I can’t recall right off the top of my head what denomination that she works within, and she tells the story, she was preparing a sermon that she was going to deliver and it was on forgiveness. Now the reason I’m talking about this right now is forgiveness is another process of letting things go, and so I think it aptly applies here as we’re talking about what needs to fall out of your life. Maybe I need to let resentment fall out of my life. Maybe I need to let criticism and judgement that I hold for other people fall out of my life. All of those things also would center around forgiveness, so Anne Lamott was talking about that she was preparing a sermon on forgiveness and she kind of was feeling a little bit stumped, so as she was not working through kind of her stump, she decided… she was at her office at her church and she decided… they had a daycare on site, and she thought, I really enjoy going being around in the daycare, just kind of stepping in, being around the little kids, and so I’m gonna just put this aside, walk down to the daycare, just observe what’s going on, interact with the workers and the kids, and then maybe it will get me out of this funk that I’m in, and so she went down and she said, I’m standing in the room and I’m noticing all these kids holding onto things, so she talks about one little kid who is coloring and he’s sitting at the table coloring with one hand, but in the other hand he’s got this fist of crayons that he doesn’t want to let go of in case somebody else comes and takes one from him, and so he’s kind of holding on to the crayons with one hand while he’s trying to color with the other, and she says, I notice another kid over sitting here playing with blocks, and the kid’s building something with blocks, but at the same time, the kid is kind of protecting these other blocks that he doesn’t want another child to come take because this child is planning to use them for whatever this child is building, and so she says, I’m just noticing all of this activity as they’re playing, most of them independently, and they’re using but they’re also kind of hoarding or holding on to something, and she says, as I’m still kind of thinking through this sermon that I’ve been working on with forgiveness, she says, I’m noticing how these kids are kind of holding onto something and it’s affecting the way that they can interact with the blocks, or it’s affecting how good that they can color, and she says, I’m thinking to myself, what would make these kids let go? What would make this little kid let go of those crayons, and what would let this little kid just get up and walk away from the blocks instead of holding on kind of so protectively? And she says, about this time, one of the teachers comes in and has a cart and it’s got snacks. It’s got like juice boxes and some cookies, and the kids are gonna have a snack time, and she says, I get this answer to my question as all of the kids, the kid with the crayons puts down all of the crayons and just walks away from them. The kid who’s hoarding the blocks just leaves what that child is doing, walks away from the blocks, and she said, it kind of clicked for me in my sermon that if we’re going to be able to be successful in letting go of something or in offering forgiveness, she says we have to want something else more, so for these kids, they wanted the juice box and the cookies more than they wanted the crayons or the blocks or whatever toys they were playing with, and so I think that’s an important thing to remember right now as we’re in this time of uncertainty and we see people hoarding. They’re hoarding toilet paper, they were hoarding bottled waters, they’re buying out Costco, buying out Sam’s Club. There’s some fear behind that. Uncertainty is certainly driving that fear, and so I think for us as we’re trying to maybe be intentional and increase our awareness so that we can limit the impact on our own emotional health right now, it’s something to be aware of and say okay, what do I want more? What do I need to let go of in my life? Maybe it is this living with fear that really needs to fall out of my life, so what’s going to fall in to take that place?
Now getting back to this idea of freefall, I think I’ve shared these stories on the podcast before, but it’s probably been a while, and so I’m going to share them again, and if you’ve heard them before, I apologize. I happen to think they’re pretty good stories, so you might not care if you’ve heard them before, but when I talk about freefall, I will tell clients sometimes something happens in our life and we don’t even see it, and all of a sudden, we’re falling, and that, like Joseph Campbell was saying, that feeling of falling is not good, so there was a time in my life when something similar like that happened to me, and I was married and I had 3 kids at the time, and I went on a trip with… so my one sister and her husband lived in Arizona and then I had another sister and her husband who were also living in Utah with me and my husband, so we decided we were going to go down to Southern Utah. My one sister would drive up from Arizona and the two of us would go down and meet her and we’d just kind of have a vacation together and do some fun stuff together. So one of the things that we were doing is hiking around in the Grand Canyon, and my brother-in-law that lived in Arizona at the time, he was really into hiking and different things like that, so he was leading us and his wife is behind him, and then my husband behind her, and then I’m behind him, my brother-in-law is behind me and my last sister, my youngest sister is behind him, and so we’re walking along, and we had actually hiked in and we were at the point in the day of hiking back out, and it was on a pretty flat area that we were walking, and there was like a trail, an established trail, not like super wide or anything like if somebody was coming the other direction, we would certainly have to move one way or the other to let them past, but we were just walking. Like I said, it wasn’t rough terrain, it was pretty flat, and I’m walking along and the next thing I know, I’m falling, and I don’t know how it happened. I don’t know what I did. I was walking and the next thing I knew, I was falling, and my brother-in-law saw it happen because he was right behind me, so he quickly started moving down. I think I fell if I’m remembering correctly, it was about 20 feet that I fell, and it’s an interesting thing when you’re falling. I did have some awareness. I knew I was falling. I remember thinking to myself, wait how did this happen? And I was kind of going head over feet, just kind of falling down, and just like… I don’t even know if I can grab onto anything. I did not know where I was, and I felt like I was just kind of surrendering to the fall and hoping that I would be okay. Now I was also thinking… I also had the thought, so at the time I had asked my mom to watch my kids while we went, and my mom was a single mom and I think she would have… we knew that she would feel bad if she knew that the 3 of us sisters were getting together and we didn’t include her, but we also wanted to have time just as siblings and not with my mom, and so we all chose not to tell my mom that we were going. So where we were going in Southern Utah, my younger sister, her in-laws live down there, so she was just like oh we’re going down to visit our in-laws, and my other sister that lived in Arizona, my mom wouldn’t necessarily know that they weren’t home that weekend, and so it was me, and I had just told her that I think it was around our anniversary time, so we were just going away, we’re going to go to Southern Utah, it was just kind of a coincidence that my younger sister was going to be there, so the other thought that I had while I was falling was this is what happens when you lie. The truth has a way of coming out, and now Mom’s gonna know because I’m gonna be on the news tonight. I’m going to have to be airlifted out. That didn’t happen thankfully, and I believe my mom died without knowing that we had done that, so eventually I stopped. Again, I don’t know how I started to fall, I don’t know how I stopped, but eventually I stopped and kind of was like trying to orient myself to where I was and where the other people, where my party way, and pretty shortly my brother-in-law was down to me and he had kind of come down the side of the hill and gotten to me, and my husband was pretty close behind him, and the first thing my brother-in-law said to me was like, how did this happen? You were walking, and then you were falling, and I was like, yeah, that was my experience too. I was walking, and then I was falling. I was okay. I had some pretty nasty scrapes. I had torn my pants. I had some pretty big bruises, and the next few days I was very sore, but thankfully nothing was broken, nothing was severely injured, and I was able to finish hiking back out to our cars, and so that was an experience of freefall. I didn’t see it coming. I didn’t know how it happened, but I found myself falling. Really unpleasant experience, unless like Joseph Campbell says, we turn this fall that was maybe imposed on us into a voluntary act.
Now the next story was a time when I had gone… I had been invited to go to a residential treatment center in Tennessee for a professionals weekend, and it was a busy time in my life. I was busy with work, and so I remember getting the invitation. I said that I would go, and I really didn’t give it a second thought. Probably like two or three days before I was supposed to fly out to Tennessee, I was supposed to… I got an email, and I remember getting it, and it was like the subject matter was like things to bring, and I got it, I did not read it, I didn’t even look at it, and then I forgot about it, so I was sitting in the Denver airport on a layover, and I was like, oh I got that email. I should open that, and actually I should have opened it when I was still home, so I opened it and it had my packing list, and none of the stuff that I was supposed to pack was what I had actually packed. I was thinking professionals weekend, and so I packed clothing and shoes conducive to professional dress, and that’s not at all what we were going to be doing. We were going to be doing a sweat lodge, we were going to be doing ziplining, all sorts of stuff that I would never wear my professional clothes for, so I’m sitting in the Denver airport thinking to myself, okay, so once I land, what can I buy to get me through this weekend? So one of the activities that we did that weekend was bungee jumping, and I had never done that before, and so we were out in the kind of a rural area, Nunnelly, Tennessee, and we had to scale this wall. It was pretty high, I think if I remember correctly it was like 70 feet high or 90 feet high, and it was an old dam, pre-Civil War is what they told us. It looked old. It was still holding up fairly well, like we could climb up on it, but to do so, they had ladders, so they had a ladder, an extension ladder going up to this first little ledge, and then a ladder on that ledge that you then had to climb up, and I don’t really like ladders, and I don’t like heights, so just getting up was terrifying for me, so I climb up, and we’re harnessed in, so we’re secure, it’s not like it’s super high-risk, but it feels really high as you’re climbing and the extension ladder is kind of moving with you, so we climb up to the first ledge, and then you have to climb up to the second ledge, and there might have been a couple more. I don’t really recall. I get to the final ledge, and when I say “ledge”, this top ledge, the length of my foot wouldn’t even fit on the ledge, and I don’t have really big feet. I’m a 7 ½. It would not… my whole foot wouldn’t fit on the ledge, so I’m like with my toes on the ledge, my heels are off, and I’m supposed to like shimmy out to Bobby, who worked there and was kind of leading this. I’m supposed to shimmy out to Bobby, so I shimmy out to Bobby. Bobby says to me, what are you feeling? And I say fear. I’m feeling fear, and then I said no, no, no, I’m actually feeling panic. I am… every part of my body is panicked right now. He asked me, well what color is that? And I remember initially thinking, what the hell kind of question is that? And then I… it was giving my brain, it was kind of bringing my left brain online. It was asking it a question, and my left brain responded and was like it’s orange. Bobby’s like okay, it’s orange, and he’s like, can you turn yourself around? And I’m like no. I don’t think I can. So he kind of talked me through, like notice where you’re feeling this panic. I’m like, it’s all over my body. Okay, take a couple of breaths. See if you can start to bring it from your extremities into the core. Okay, so I’m taking some breaths, I’m trying to get this from my extremities into my core, get it out of my head into my core. So then I’m kind of gathering up all the anxiety so it’s not spread out everywhere and instead it’s in an isolated or a certain spot that I’ve decided to bring it to in my body, so when I was able to do that, he was like, okay can you turn around now? So I did, and again, I’m harnessed in, and I’m feeling the harness around my chest and everything, and so he said okay, so now I want you to jump. And before we did he kind of said the third step prayer in the twelve steps fellowships, and we kind of had a personal dialogue as I’m standing there on the ledge facing out 70 or 90 feet above the ground, and he said now I want you to jump starfish, like our first inclination will be to grab the harness, and he’s like grabbing the harness is going to do absolutely nothing for you. It’s not safer that way in any way. The harness is going to work whether you’re holding onto it or not, so I want you to see if you can jump arms out, feet out, starfish, and just surrender to the process and jump. I had to do some deep breathing again because whoa, that… I didn’t know if I could do that, but I could grasp what he was saying, so I took a few minutes to kind of still myself, to talk myself into this place of jumping, and so this would be one of those I knew I needed to do this, not that I needed to, but I think it was right before my 40th birthday, so this was like 10 years ago, and I was 39 years old, I’m going to be turning 40… actually at that point I was going to be turning 40 in 2 weeks, and I was like I want to do this. I’m going to enter my 40s with courage and bravery, so I’m kind of talking to myself, giving myself a reason to do this. I need to do this because I will feel a sense of courage and bravery heading into this new decade of my life, so I was taking some breaths, kind of affirming myself with those words, and I did, and I jumped and jumped starfish, arms out, legs out, I didn’t grab onto my harness, I jumped, and it was exhilarating. It was a little bit scary. I won’t lie. It was scary, but it was also exhilarating, and I felt so proud of myself, and so when I also talk with clients about freefall, I will share that story. Sometimes in our life we are standing on a ledge and we know things have to change. This is where a lot of people come into therapy knowing life has to be different because they can’t keep living the way that they were living, and so they come in, they’re standing on this ledge, and they’ve taken the courage. They’ve kind of scaled this wall, they’ve made an appointment with their therapist, and they showed up for that appointment. That’s bravery, right? Now they’re standing on the ledge, they’re facing out, and I say to them, I need you to jump, and I need to you to keep jumping every week when you come back. We’re going to be looking at things that are difficult to see. We’re going to be speaking truth that you have suppressed in your body for a long time. We’re going to do things that your body says I don’t want to do this because your life is going to change, and it’s going to take courage, and it’s going to take bravery, and I need you to jump, and I tell clients often when we’re in freefall, whether it’s one that we willingly jumped into or it’s one that came out of nowhere and all of a sudden we found ourselves falling, either way our tendency, like Bobby told me, our tendency is going to be to grab anything we can. In that instance in Tennessee, that would have been for me to grab my harness, but maybe for you as you’re going through and identifying what needs to fall into your life and what needs to fall out of your life, there’s going to be some fear and uncertainty that comes up, and so we might just grab ahold of whatever’s there, and we say you know what, my job actually isn’t so bad. I don’t need to change jobs. I mean, yeah it can be toxic, but I can do this, and I’m just going to grab that and put it back in my life, but life is saying you need a change. This has to fall out, so we have to let it fall out. Maybe we’re saying, you know what, these relationships are super toxic to me, but they’re what I have, they’re the people I know, they’re my family, whatever that looks like, and so we grab it and we bring it back in because to be alone, even for a little while, is too scary for us, and so that’s kind of that in this freefall times in our lives, we have to be mindful that we’re not grabbing onto whatever we can grasp and that we are being intentional about what we’re bringing in and what’s letting go.
So some of the guidelines that I give for people when they find themselves in a freefall, which I would say at this time in our world, we are all in a freefall, and so we have to let go and allow the fall to happen. Now this doesn’t mean that we’re careless and we’re not practicing social distancing. It doesn’t mean that we think that we’re immune to this and it could never happen to me. We’re washing our hands, we’re not touching our face, we’re practicing social distancing, we’re doing all those things that we can, but we’re also allowing the fall to happen, knowing that something in our world right now needs to fall out so that something else can fall in. Also guideline #2, don’t grasp for whatever is available, and don’t let your fear take you back to what needs to fall out or what you’re familiar with, and then the third guideline is you need to intentionally pull things into your life, so if you’re making a list, and I have a worksheet that we’re going to make available to go along with this podcast episode, it will be available on our website, so as you’re making that list of the things that need to fall into your life, there’s going to be ways that you can intentionally pull those things out. At the same time, you’re letting the others go. It’s kind of this idea that I have to let go of something in order to grab onto something. If my hands are full of what needs to be dropped, then I can’t grab onto what I need to come in. So we have to intentionally pull things into our life at the same time we’re releasing what needs to go. So again some of these things that we might be intentionally pulling into our life may be a sense of confidence, may be living with confidence. It might be strength that I need to pull in and intentionally be aware of the strength that I have, and in order to be aware of those things, I’m going to do A, B, and C in order to remind myself that I have that strength. Maybe I need to pull in some forgiveness or some acceptance. Maybe I need to pull in a goal that I’ve been working on. Maybe I’m pulling in changing my career. Maybe I’m pulling in moving in a different direction. Maybe for us two years ago, our family intentionally pulled in we need to move. It was time. I felt like we had overstayed a little bit, which is my tendency to overstay, and we sat down as a family, we talked about who it would impact. My youngest daughter it was going to impact the most because my other kids were all in college, and so my third daughter was graduating high school, so she would be starting college, so it was really going to cause the most disruption to my youngest, and we had a lot of open family conversations about what that would look like, and she intentionally jumped, knowing that it was going to be hard, she jumped, and it was hard. Just because she jumped didn’t mean it actually wasn’t hard. It was hard, but we’re two years into this now, and we’re so glad that we made that decision. We’re so glad that we intentionally pulled that into our life and let go of where we had been.
Now some of the things that maybe we need to let go of, like I was saying, fear. I hear that as a common one. Fear or maybe resistance, judgement, resentment, for me often one of those things that I constantly have to practice and I constantly have to let go of in my life is shrinking. I will often shrink and stay small, and what I need to let fall into my life is expansion and growth. It may be specific things like not eating fast food. I’ve had clients put that on their list. I need to let go of fast food in my life. That’s a great one. If what you’re intentionally pulling in is better health, that’s a great one. So again, maybe it’s letting go of stress and with that bringing in peace. Those are some broad concepts, and that’s okay, but then you have to also like bullet point underneath those how are you bringing in peace? For me right now, I’m making a practice, and this started just last week when I moved everything to online from in-person sessions, I started my day with meditation, and a couple of times, I’ve had to end my day before I leave my office in the front of my house and walk to my bedroom, which is more on the other side of my house and toward the back, sometimes before I even walk out of my office, I do a quick meditation so I can switch roles and start to relax and enjoy time with my family instead of holding on to kind of the anxiety and concern that I’ve been hearing from clients while I’ve been doing online sessions. So that’s one thing that I’m mindfully pulling in and intentionally pulling in right now in order to increase my awareness. Now I think maybe because of that, I had gone the other day to get some gas and I think I ran an errand, I don’t remember where because there’s so many limited places you can go right now, so I ran to get some gas in my car and something else, and as I was driving home, I’ve mentioned before on the podcast how my cortisol levels, which is the hormone, its’ a stress hormone that your body releases, and mine tend to run really high, and I didn’t know that until about maybe around 10 years ago, and I did my first cortisol test, and the doctor who had administered the test was like, these cortisol levels are off the chart. Here’s the normal chart, and even your low does not register on the chart, so she’s like it might have been a mistake, so she had me repeat the test. Same results. So she was like, okay three times. Let’s do it three times just to make sure. So I did it a third time. Exact same results. That’s how I found out my body tends to run high on cortisol, and I really think it’s a default setting for my body that goes back to some of the stress and trauma that I lived in as a child. So in the past decade since I found that out, I’ve done quite a bit to try to lower my cortisol levels. Now some of that includes exercise. That can help lower cortisol levels. It can also be eating a healthy diet helps lower cortisol levels. During that time for a couple of years, and I was fortunate that I had the money to do this, but I was going regularly, like twice a month, to get a massage, and I was going to the same massage therapist, and every two weeks she would be like, I cannot believe it’s only been two weeks, You are so tight. Every muscle in your body is on fire and in knots, and so I just set aside that money. I budgeted it. I made it a priority because I really wanted to get to a place of lowering my cortisol levels. So back to the story, so the other day I go to get gas, I go somewhere else, and I’m driving home in my car. It was maybe a 10-minute drive, not very long. I’m driving home in my car, and for most of my life I think I lived with high cortisol levels and I had no idea. It was just how my body felt, but I do know in the last several years, it has felt so much better, and all of a sudden I was like, oh no, I think my stress levels are going up. I think my cortisol levels are going up, and it makes sense because things are stressful right now, and I don’t necessarily feel a lot of anxiety. I think it’s just in my body, but it’s not always something that rises to my brain and I’m aware of it, but this time, it did, and I’m going to go ahead and give that credit to the meditation practice that I’ve been doing this week and kind of tuning in with my body and being aware of what’s going on in my body, and I was like okay, I need to be aware of this. I need to make some changes, keep up the meditation, I need to make sure I’m drinking enough because that’s also something that helps, and I ordered the ashwagandha that’s a natural root that helps kind of release the cortisol levels. I need to do that so that I can get back to my new normal of not living with such high stress and cortisol levels in my body.
So again, this is a time of freefall, and it’s a time of uncertainty. I’m going to end again with a quote by Joseph Campbell. “We’re in a freefall into future. We don’t know where we’re going. Things are changing so fast and always when you’re going through a long tunnel, anxiety comes along, and all you have to do to transform your Hell into a paradise is to turn your fall into a voluntary act. It’s a very interesting shift of perspective, and that’s all it is. Joyful participation in the sorrows, and everything changes.” We are in a freefall into the future, and our anxieties about the unknown can be eliminated if we embrace uncertainty and transform Hell into a paradise. Another quote from Joseph Campbell—he says, “We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” And I think during this time, we’re kind of entering this cave of uncertainty, and oftentimes the cave that we fear to enter holds some great treasure for us, and so if we can go into this voluntarily, if we can recognize the uncertainty and turn that fear into a willingness and embrace some of the uncertainty, be able to get comfortable…. I often say we have to get comfortable being uncomfortable, and then be intentional about what needs to happen for us individually and maybe for us as families that needs to fall in and that we have to let go of.