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Going with the Flow

Going with the Flow

I highly recommend the Nemo show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Florida. I have had the opportunity to see it quite a few times, and it never fails to put me in tears from the beginning to the end. The short musical basically distills the parenting theme of the story into a perfectly clear vision. The actors/singers are so talented I am left in awe. The set is a brilliant visual smorgasbord, and the creativity that went into designing the puppet theme that the performance is structured around is simply inspiring. When I get the chance to see it, the original score of songs is left in my head for weeks.

Admittedly, I can be very much a Marlin type character in my parenting style. I can be very uptight and overprotective when it comes to my kids. They have yet to sleep over at a friend’s house on their own, and I am still sticking to my plan for them to hold off on their driver’s licenses until after they are eighteen years old. In other respects, I can be pretty laid back, but I definitely admit to being uptight in many ways, so the message of the Nemo story means a lot to me. I strive to do a better job at letting my kids discover their own path in life. I know that I cannot shelter them forever, and that I would hurt them if I tried.

Anyhow, I have been thinking about one of the songs/topics that the musical touches on which is “Go with the Flow.” It’s sung by the surfer-voiced turtle character, and focuses on letting go, and accepting what life brings our way with grace and ease. I have actually read a book or two on flow. It is a theory on how to live. The theory explores the idea that instead of pushing and fighting for what we believe we want out of life, we might benefit more by opening up to what comes to us naturally, and using it to our advantage, because it is what the universe means for us to ultimately have. The idea actually resonates with me quite a bit. I have had so many experiences where I was willing to let go and take what was coming my way without reassurances, but with the faith that everything would be okay. For the most part I think that things have worked out beautifully for me, so I guess that I must trust the idea of simply going with life’s flow.

It does not sound particularly productive or proactive, but it also isn’t a lazy or counterproductive approach. I see it more like playing a good tennis match. Unless you wait to see where the ball is headed, you will end up in the wrong spot and miss it entirely. When we push ourselves relentlessly to accomplish things that the universe is not quite prepared for us to achieve yet, we end up extremely disappointed (when for some reason) things don’t quite work out. Of course, it can be argued that there is no way to really know when it is the right time to put our energy into accomplishing something, but then…isn’t there? If I really listen, if I really pay attention, I can usually tell when something I am doing in my life, isn’t quite the right thing. I can feel it.

Ultimately, waiting for confirmation from that inner voice, and clues from the world around, before taking action, is a good idea…if only for the fact that it can help to diminish some of the stress in life. I believe that health wise; stress is public enemy number one. I have several family members who suffer more from stress than from any other affliction. I know people who instantly get sick when they are faced with stressful situations. It is a little frightening what a strong effect stress has on the human body. So giving “flow” a try can have a highly positive effect on a person’s life. Maybe just asking the world a question when we don’t know what to do next, sending the idea out in the universe, and taking what comes our way is worth a try.


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