The Alchemy of Letting Go

Despite the forecast, live like it’s Spring.” – Lilly Pulitzer

The title for this post came to me one evening while out with friends at a local coffee bar – one of them currently in the middle of this very process; over steaming cups of rooibos chai tea and a bottle of juice, she shared with us some of her thoughts regarding the dismantling of her Vancouver world to prepare for a new life back home in Australia. As her friends, we are also learning the fine art of letting go, it’s hard to believe that she will be flying out next week.

Some of her thoughts centered around the accumulation of the material that we all participate in (we are still hunters and gatherers after all!) and the responsibility that comes now with the act of choosing what to keep and what to give away. There is attachment and sentiment to ponder, the wanting to honour those objects that served us so well be they our books, souvenirs, precious rocks or jewels and the final transformation, the freedom that comes from the act of letting go. In letting go, we are creating space for something new to rush in, allowing that movement to carve our innermost selves into new shapes and in the giving we can colour another person’s world. We are only the caretakers of all we have accumulated or been given, we cannot take any of it with us and the joy comes when we are ready to let go and let the alchemy begin!

We learned the art of letting go early on while living in Mexico – often we would have to leave the very things that we had to buy or were given as it was impractical to bring such things home to Vancouver. To this day and recently inspired by our friend, I continue to participate in the ebb and flow of the material…

Journal Entry: January 21, 2000

We anticipate being here in Puerto Vallarta for the next 10 days, after the 31st we hope to have a flight booked for home. Terry and I are starting to take our last pictures and keep a mental list of things we want to do before we leave. This past Wednesday we took a bus out to the Marina to check out their gallery “Art Walk”. It was nice to wander at night with a cooling drink and see all the art on display. We’ve made sure that we checked out our local “Art Walks” as well for this month.

Part of getting ready to go is passing on any items that we will not be bringing home. We’ve passed on some pocket books to Carole at the “Libreria Vallarta” (as well as our Fodor’s Mexico 2000), to our Seattle neighbours Gudrun and Leslie in #205 as well and Jean-Claude (from Quebec) in #207 received our poinsettia plant. Bob, our previous neighbour in #203, gave us the plant wrapped in brown paper, as a gift. He thought it would brighten up our studio and it did! Over the holiday season I saw the odd person bringing one home and wished for one myself. I’ve really appreciated Bob’s gift – as a memory I took a picture of it. Jean-Claude will take good care of it.

E-Mail Note to Huguette: January 13, 2005

…it’s hard to believe that we will be home soon, it feels like we have been down here for a very long time. I’m wondering if this is because of living in two different neighbourhoods (the Romantic Zone and Hotel Centro)! We had another good breakfast morning this week at Cafe San Angel – our friend Ted, who lives in Campbell River, B.C., joined us. He’s a really great guy and we are glad to call him our friend. Not too much is happening as we wind down our time here – we have a list of things that we always like to do before we leave, it could be re-visiting a favourite restaurant or buying a treat that we like – we have enjoyed buying these ice cream bars called “Magnum”, our favourite is the chocolate one with almonds. We bought one each on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day! Our main goal is to bring back light backpacks, so we are trying to use up our tea and other goodies before we fly home.

Puerto Vallarta is a place that I can never let go of, this is it's heart, the malecon.

Puerto Vallarta is a place that I can never let go of, this is it’s heart, the malecon.


Our beautiful sanctuary, #204 at the "Janitzio".

Our beautiful sanctuary, #204, at the “Janitzio”.

About anotetohuguette

I'm currently blogging from the beautiful West Coast city of Vancouver, British Columbia - a vibrant city by the sea, surrounded by mountains and a very unique urban forest.
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4 Responses to The Alchemy of Letting Go

  1. ugetse says:

    A great lesson to be learned here Kimita. I am very guilty of keeping things. Like a friend of ours ( Jacquie) likes to say. Things that she keeps are feathers for her nest. I guess they keep her warm and cosy and they are a certain stability and comfort. In revenge, I also remember how free it was to let go when I lived in Mexico. So many times, at the last minute, I left everything behind in Vancouver, in Quebec and in Mexico. WHY can I no longer be that gal? In the winter of my life, it is important to declutter…thank you Kim for reminding me. You are an expert at that.
    But most of all, I will miss our new friend that embark in a new life, new adventure. We wish her all the very best. Huguette. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    • I also like feathering my nest like Jacquie does – I am most happy surrounded by books, different flavours of tea, the odd bottle of wine and candle holders! Enjoy the winter of your life with all it’s colour, dust motes and creativity…


  2. Wow, I like your writing style. It’s very rich and full of flavor.

    I especially like:
    “In letting go, we are creating space for something new to rush in, allowing that movement to carve our innermost selves into new shapes and in the giving we can colour another person’s world.”

    That’s really deep. It’s like that there’s this tangible, negative space sucking in the surrounding environment to create something new. Kind of like a black hole, but a good one. Or how in human physiology, people create a negative intrathoracic pressure to breathe in air into their lungs. Regardless, great post and I’ll be following your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much! It is such a treat to read a comment from someone who has read one of my posts, I appreciate the feedback and this encourages me to keep on writing, my goal (always!) is to share thoughts or experiences that someone might find “very rich and full of flavor”.

      Liked by 1 person

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