What helps small things stay small 3


I went through a bad spot in my life when I felt unloved, unlucky, and unwanted. I was young, beautiful (I can see my then beauty better from the distance of years), energetic, enthusiastic and bursting with desire.  Nothing was happening for me in the relationship department.  The lack of kisses and hugs and caring from another adult was weighing me down.  Life felt like a drudge.


Because of how I was feeling – small things seemed huge!   I walked around in a state of perpetual annoyance and irritation. A perceived slight or any indication of incompetence from clerks or customer service reps became huge in my eyes. I would stew over things that should have been brushed away.  Worry became a constant companion.  I’d worry and pray. Pray and worry.  Miseries accumulated.  Anxiousness weighed. 

I walked through my life during this period as a woman who waited – waited for love to find me, waited for luck to visit me, kept looking for the sun in what felt like an extended winter storm.


I wore myself out.  Finally, I got tired of being in the space where I was.  I started counting my blessings – however small they felt at the time (and really they were huge – good health, decent shelter, gainful employment, trusted friends). 


I made a list of all the things I was looking for in a man.  I then said this prayer – that the universe send me someone who loved me at the same time I loved them, that I be able to recognize that love or that the desire be taken away from me.  I ended that prayer with “thy will be done.”   Once I prayed that prayer, I truly let it go.  I told my daughter that I would leave Boston in a year or so, once I’d achieved a goal I’d set for myself with my job. 


Acknowledging that I had a deep desire for love in writing, praying for love, setting my sights on a new horizon, and letting it all go freed me.   Because I felt my days in Boston were winding down, I started an extended goodbye tour. I visited places I loved in the city and sought out places I’d never gotten to – museums, stores, neighborhoods and parks. 


I started appreciating what I had – a beautiful and big apartment on a lovely cul-de-sac in Roxbury.  I read copiously and started crocheting baby blankets for a program that gave blankets to newborns.  I went out dancing but I stopped looking for a potential mate in every dance partner. I no longer sat on the edge of my seat with my radar scanning for potential mates.  Instead, I relaxed, sat back in the chair and just observed the people around me.


As often happens, once I stopped looking for love and just started to be, love and I found each other. My plans to leave Boston changed.


The biggest change I noticed, however, was that small things began to stay small.  Annoyances and irritations were able to remain just that – mere blips in the background.  Love helps small things stay small.  Things are able to roll off your back.  Your feathers are unruffled.  Because you have and are love, you can let things go.  I did.  In fact, growing in love made me able to let a lot of things go. 

It’s great to travel light.


About Candelaria Silva

Candelaria Silva-Collins is a marketing, community outreach and programming consultant; writer; and trainer/facilitator who lives in Boston, Massachusetts. She has designed and facilitated workshops on a wide variety of topics including communication, facilitation, job search skills, team building, and parenting issues. She currently coordinates the Community Membership Program of the Huntington Theatre Company. Her work as Director of ACT Roxbury was profiled in several publications, including The Creative Communities Builders Handbook. Candelaria’s children’s stories, short stories, essays and reviews have been published in local and national publications and she is an active blogger. Her publications include the booklets, Handling Rejection; Pushing through Shyness: Networking Tips when You’re Shy, Slow to Warm Up or Just don’t Feel you Belong; and Real Questions about Sex & Relationships for Teens: A Discussion Guide for Parents. She has served on the boards of Goddard College, Wheelock Family Theatre, Boston Foundation for Architecture, and Discover Roxbury. She is currently Chair, Designators of the Henderson Foundation.

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3 thoughts on “What helps small things stay small

  • Lara

    I love this post. Just last night, while I couldn’t sleep, I was thinking about how cruel insomnia is in highlighting my loneliness these days as I go through my separation w/my husband. And then I read your line about being a woman who waited – and, well that made me remember why I made the choices I did. Why I’m letting go.
    What lovely timing, Candelaria. Thank you.

  • Candelaria

    I am sorry that you’re going through a separation but glad that you are recognizing why you made this choice.
    It’s nice to know that my words help.

  • Reyita

    Cadelaria-

    Thank you for this one, love is hard, loneliness hurts, when deep down you are a good person and yet you keep meeting so much less then you (I)deserve.. my frustration comes in knowing I was deceived, lied to, and taking advantage of… I hurt now but I must stand still, and let god do his thing.. I do have to focus on my blessings, and not this situation that is bringing me down…