Expectations ruin us. It’s so hard for anything to live up to our expectations. We always want the best. No one wants to settle for average. No one wants to be second best. And so we imagine up these wonderful fantasies for ourselves where we marry a beautiful person, live in a grand house, travel the whole world, make six figure salaries, and anything less to us just doesn’t seem to cut it.
Now, it’s not a bad thing to want the best for yourself. However, it is a bad thing to never appreciate what you have in the process. You should always love what you have. You should strive for excellence, but in doing so, you must never ignore what got you there.
Appreciate your first girlfriend or boyfriend who taught you how to open up to people. Appreciate your 1 bedroom apartment which made you independent. Appreciate your minimum wage job which taught you the value of money. Appreciate all your failures that helped you understand that nothing ever came easy. Appreciate the people in your life who loved you when you were starting out and weren’t able to love yourself.
Show your appreciation to the things and to the people that made you who you are today. Don’t take them for granted. Love yours.
There was a way I wanted my life to go when I was young. I had goals I wanted to achieve by certain points in my life; I wanted to have my first kiss by 14, I wanted to be graduated from University by 22, have a house and a car by 25, etc etc.
That was way back in the day. I’m 21 now and my life isn’t exactly going according to plan. I’m still achieving my goals but it’s been a considerably slow process.
As time has gone by though, I’ve come to the realization that life isn’t a race. It’s not meant to be treated as such. It’s alright if you don’t have your shit together by 24. It’s alright if you need a little more time. And I genuinely believe that. Although when you see the people around you achieving great things, there’s always a part of you that questions yourself and what you’ve managed to accomplish in comparison.
It’s great if your friends get into medical school or make the Dean’s List, but it stings a little when you’re not there with them. As humans, we have a fundamental nature to compare ourselves to the people around us. That’s not the right way to go about things, but it happens. It’s bound to happen.
In truth, the only person you should strive to be better than is who you were yesterday. Work on yourself and achieve your goals at whatever pace you feel comfortable with. Having life goals is a good thing. It gives you motivation and purpose, but don’t ruin your life trying to outdo others.
Last week was not a good week. It was probably the worst week of my life. Never before have I related so much to a children’s book title, that being A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket. But that’s not what this post is about. This post is about what happened today, as a result of last week.
Without going into too much detail, I was in the hospital last week. Through a series of events far too random to explain, my ex-girlfriend was the one in the hospital with me. It wasn’t my family, or any of my best friends, but my estranged ex-girlfriend. She stayed with me throughout the night and took care of me until I was cleared to go back home. This is the same ex-girlfriend who also cheated on me a little over a year ago and we hadn’t spoken to one another in time.
Flash forward to this week and she texts me wanting to see me one last time before she moves to Halifax. Yes, Halifax, it’s that kind of random. Anyway, I agreed to see her. I was under the impression that she wanted to make sure I was okay before she left. I was wrong, as I so often am when it comes to girls.
She wanted to get back together. Apparently, my hospital visit had made her realize that she still had feelings for me. My first instinct was to hurt her. It was to tell her no and simply storm away, but I didn’t, in large part because of how she’d taken care of me at the hospital. So I heard her out and I tried to talk her out of it. I reminded her how we’d already tried once and how it hadn’t worked out. I told her how it would end up being long distance and that’s never easy for anyone. If Tim and Lyla from Friday Night Lights couldn’t do long distance, what chance did we have? I told her all kinds of things but she wouldn’t budge on it. And so I left. I left her crying and that made me feel awful.
But it was the right thing to do. She’d broken me over a year ago and I couldn’t just give her the power to do that again. I appreciate her so much for taking care of me when I needed it the most, but getting back together would’ve been wrong…for both of us. You can’t go back to what broke you. It’s not going to fix anything. You have to move on. You have to leave some people behind.