I have always been a perfectionist, my worst critic. Just today, our team was working on a shared spreadsheet, there was a column with a mixture of upper and lowercase Ys. I couldn’t resist and had to make all of them uppercase. It had to look clean and consistent!
My path hasn’t always been straight and narrow nor clean and consistent. I must admit, like most people, this isn’t the life I had planned for myself as a child, young teen or even as an adult. As most girls, I dreamt of marriage, children and a white picket fence… but in my late teens I had an interesting epiphany… why go straight from minding my parents, to minding a husband, children and a home. (Does anyone even say “minding” anymore?) At that moment, I decided that I wanted to make the most of my life as a single adult. I wanted to make decisions for myself for a while, find myself, explore the world, discover new things. It was an ambitious decision… in my mind I envisioned a glamorous, exciting and fun life. My life has been those things at some points in time, I made an exciting move halfway across the country to start a new chapter in my mid-twenties, I try to take an overseas trip at least once a year, I have a great job that I enjoy, I’ve owned a home and I have wonderful people in my life!
While I’ve experienced amazing things in my life, there have been a few bumps in the road, but none of them have broken me. They have redirected my path, yes, but I still move forward. It always used to frustrate me when something didn’t go the way I expected, now it rarely frustrates me. I almost expect the unexpected. Not in a pessimistic way, but more in anticipation. It’s funny how the most unexpected things can produce the sweetest results.
Our path wasn’t meant to be a straight one. The redirections in life create the beautifully crooked path we find ourselves on. When I started embracing the unexpected, the pressure started coming off… There’s so many things we can’t control… Life is not perfect. I am not perfect… and that’s ok…
We have to learn to let ourselves off the hook for making mistakes, for unexpected curveballs, for failed attempts, for premature leaps of faith. Sometimes we trust the wrong people, sometimes we aren’t trustworthy. We will never get it right all the time. I continue to have to forgive myself and to forgive others… to move forward and enjoy my beautifully crooked path… as it should be.