Not a Moment Too Soon: A Word on Enjoying Life as it Comes
I’m not sure if it’s normal for 12 year old girls to have their entire lives planned out, but I can tell you I did. I planned to go to school for journalism and graduate from university at 21 with a perfect GPA. At some point in my undergrad, I would meet the man of my dreams and he’d sweep me off my feet. I planned to be married at 23 and taking maternity leave from my prestigious and high-paying job a few years later to give birth to our first child. I had it all figured out.
Life, of course, as it so often does, looked me in the face and laughed. Graduate at 21? Yeah, I didn’t walk across the stage for my convocation until the summer before my 24th birthday. And as for the perfect GPA, thanks to the C+ my French professor gave me out of pity—truthfully, I should have failed—my GPA fell a little short. My bank account is all the proof you need to know I do not have a prestigious high-paying journalism job, and there’s been no maternity leave because there haven’t been any babies.
But life decided to smile on me a little. After kissing a few frogs who didn’t turn into princes, I did find the man of my dreams during my undergrad. He did sweep me off my feet. And though my 23rd birthday has long come and past, last weekend, he helped me get a little bit closer to that vision I had for my life when he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
It was a little later in life than my 12 year old self had envisioned, but it was perfect. It was right on time and it was beautiful. And I realize a lot of my life has been like that. So what I didn’t graduate at 21 with a perfect GPA? I still graduated at the top of my class. I didn’t get a journalism job, I didn’t even pursue journalism, but I’m doing what I love every day. I didn’t get married at 23, but I’ll be getting married at 27 to someone who’s just right for me.
If you try to force your life to work according to some timeline, you’ll always be disappointed because life just doesn’t work that way. It’s absolutely important to set goals for yourself and have aspirations for your life, but remember to be patient with yourself and flexible with the timelines you set. If you spend all your time miserable over “where you should have been” and “what you should have done” you’ll always miss out on the joy of where you are and what you’ve done. Trust me, there’s no greater happiness than when you live life in the moment.