What does it mean to choose? When have to make a choice between things, what are we really doing to ourselves? I have always struggled with choice. Choice. Choosing. To choose is to not have. At least that is how I have always seen it. The idea that if I have to choose between this career or that career, in the end it means that I will not have that career I did not choose. This has seemed to me to be a terrible loss. I am greedy. I want it all. Don’t you? Don’t we all want it all? Weren’t we taught as women that we could have it all? But we can’t really. Not like that. To have it all means something different to me on this rainy morning.
When my husband left for work this morning he complained that it was raining. I said, “Honey we need the rain. We are in a drought.” He paused and looked at me. Smiling he said, “I know. But I love when it is sunny out.” Yes, I thought. I love it when it is sunny out too. I want it to be sunny all the time. But really, I want my garden to grow and I want my children to have good water to swim in and drink. So, I love the rain too. We want it all, but we really don’t. The rainy days make the sunny days that much better. The seasons serve a higher purpose. They remind us of the passing of time and allow us to appreciate each part of the year with more poignancy and awe.
A full life is about choices, but choosing something is not necessarily the loss of something else. It is really the acceptance of what you really need and want in your life. It is accepting and embracing your true self. Your true nature. The loss of something not chosen is part of the beauty of this life. If we could have it all, at once, it would lose its meaning and life would cease to be as precious as it really is.
Embrace the choice. For it is what makes us unique and good. I will not mourn the life not chosen anymore. I will celebrate the life I have. Choose wisely and you will be wise.
Lisa Jo Baker has an interesting task every Friday. She calls it Five Minute Friday and it is a writing exercise posited around a particular prompt. You write to the prompt for a total of five minutes, uninterrupted, unedited, and then you link your writing to her site. As well, you go back and read two entries and comment on them.
She has, in effect, created a writer’s workshop. I love this and find it fun to participate in whether or not I had a blog. It is about the writing after all.
She worried all the time. Worries about what might be. What could be. What if. What had she tossed away? What had she kept? Had she chosen the right husband? Had she moved to the right state? Did she choose the right vocation? Did she do everything right? Was she failing her children? Was she failing herself? She worried and worried.
And it did her no good.
The worry is just that. Worry. It doesn’t fixx, solve, repair, build, or complete anything. It just takes away from what we have in our hearts and heads. When we worry we prolong the projected pain that we think will be there in front of us. We try to work through some of that projected pain by worrying, as if that will lessen the impact, the real pain, that may come with the worry coming true.
I worry all the time about my writing. Will I ever write as much as I need to to get better? Will I ever write something that I might submit for publishing? Will I ever write something worth publishing? What if no one wants to publish my work? What if my work is total crap? What if I am the only one who doesn’t notice it is complete and total crap?
Yeah, okay. Well then. Does it help me in any way? No. It robs me of my joy and open heart. It makes it harder for me to sit down and write anything. For my worries have taken the control. They care captaining the ship that is me. I am now on the worry course headed to Worry Island, and for what? Nothing. Only more delays. Only more procrastination. More putting off what I am called to do, no matter what it is.
When we put our energy into worrying we create a place free from promise and potential. We hunker down with demons who keep our feet cobbled. We can’t go far now for we are buried in our own self-fulfilling worry connected at the feet to some old story about not being deserving or good enough.
I have never been a big believer in the power of positive thinking, but I am a believer in “worry will hamper your style.” Worry will rob you of what really matters to you for you will be too busy worrying to notice that your train has come and it is time to board that lounge car and bang something out with confidence, determination, and an open heart.
Don’t miss your train.
The inaugural post. I sit at my desk and I am eager to jump in. To say all that swims around in my heart and head. There is a balance between exposition and reserve. This is a place where that balance is pretty important. You choose to bear things about yourself, warts and all. (I have no warts!) You send your information out into the world and you want to be welcomed. At the same time no one really cares about what you had for lunch, but maybe your family doctor and even then I would be suspicious. Maggie Mason is an amazing inspiration for me. She creates copy in the most open manner, but she refrains from spilling her guts about the mundane.
My posts will focus on being of use to you, my dear friend. This will not be a place where I brag or preen, but rather a place where I try to bring something of value to you. I think I will start with this…
Chet Faker – Talk Is Cheap from Toby & Pete on Vimeo.