I recognize that I think and write like autumn and my season has arrived. It’s a time for contemplation and long leisurely walks. It feels like long sips of hot chocolate and lingering over a cup of tea. It’s sweater and boot weather. Breathe it in. Wrap yourself in a scarf and enjoy it.
I had a plan. I always have a plan. Ask me how often the plan turns out exactly the way I imagined it would. I’ll wait… Exactly, zero percent of the time. Am I a poor planner? Are the plans any good? I usually think so. The exact one thing that usually goes wrong is that execution takes waaay longer than I thought.
So, I build more time into my plans and they still take longer than I thought. It leads me to ask several questions. Am I planning the wrong things? Is my execution poor? Am I even on the right journey? Oh yea, I get real philosophical real quick.
There are times when my plans turn out really well. I live in a city with a lot of traffic, and I do mean a lot, so I always give myself plenty of time to get to my destination. 99% of the time, I’m early. Exactly right doesn’t seem to be an option for me when it comes to my plans.
The real truth about plans is that they can give you a sense of being in control when you don’t really feel that way. They give your world a structure. The trick is to relax when the plans you made don’t work out the way you thought they would. Going with the flow of whatever is happening and trusting that you can handle whatever happens becomes the plan.
The best thing about life is also the scariest thing. You get to decide what you want to do with yours. We always have choice.
I remember back in college. I met this kid who knew exactly what he wanted to be when he grew up. He was going to be a small town doctor. He was going to be a doctor in his hometown in Georgia and make house calls just like his father did, and his father before him. Boy, was I envious. Growing up I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up. I’m not even sure I know now. I liked lots of things, and despised just as many.
The running joke when I was in college was that I changed my major every week, or at least quarterly. I only changed my major once officially, from civil engineering to rhetoric and communications(true story). I was however in constant discussion about a new class or idea I was exploring. Did I have a love for civil engineering? Nope. I was however very good at math in high school and I had a guidance counselor who was completely absent of guidance. I think I may have met with her once. She saw a kid with stellar grades in math, so engineering was the major for me, or so she decided. I got to pick the discipline. I wasn’t completely oblivious. I chose the college I wanted to go to for all of my own reasons, one being if I didn’t like civil engineering, they had other majors I was interested in.
In between civil engineering and rhetoric and communications, I went from landscape architecture to plant science to physical education to a love for marketing and chemistry to anthropology and many more I probably don’t recall. At one point I was going to design exercise wear for Paula Abdul or work for a cosmetics company like Revlon. My plan was to formulate my own lipstick colors of course. I loved chemistry.
From the first day to the last I took a wide variety of classes: anthropology, engineering basics and calculus. Every time I’d take a class pointing to a career I was interested in, only to be bored by the class. It was quite the adventure. I would never trade it. Economics, art history, a smattering of everything until I started to take rhetoric classes, then literature classes, and communications classes both interpersonal and organizational. That’s when I started to light up. Lots of writing in there, which I wasn’t so great at in the beginning, and found to be drudgery. But, I felt its importance immediately. Self-expression, the communicating of ideas, I loved it. I wanted more of it. I wanted to be better at it. I even learned how to give a speech.
What I really learned is that my ideas and opinions were valuable and it was okay for me to express myself.
I interviewed for a reporting job after I graduated and got it. Here’s the kicker, it was as a sports reporter in a city so small I don’t even remember the name of it. Oh, and there’s the fact that I didn’t know ANYTHING about sports. Apparently, I was the only one who interviewed for the job…clearly.
I love Bob Costas to this day, but I cannot do what he does. He is a sportscaster as well as a writer. He group up loving sports. I did not. I was not a sports loving kid. I can’t state the truth in that enough. I was NOT a sports loving kid. Like a lot of girls I took the occasional dance class and watched gymnastics during the Olympics. That’s the end of that sports story.
When you’re young, having to find your way in the world and discover who you are can be quite scary, actually as an adult too, but when you have some years on you, you realize that change happens all the time and it’s not as scary as you thought it would be; in your youth, not so much.
“Change is the handmaiden Nature requires to do her miracles with.”
Change is inevitable. Choices are always available. One day at a time, one choice at a time, that’s how I’ve decided(see that choice there) to live my days, me and nature creating miracles together, or at least a life of my choosing.