“Sometimes you have to let go of the picture of what you thought life would be like and learn to find joy in the story you are actually living.”
Rachel Marie Martin
When reading a good book, what keeps you from getting bored as you turn the pages? What about that story keeps you hooked and wanting more?
It’s the twists, the turns, the intrigue.
Before starting a new book, you may have read the blurb on the back. It may have been recommended to you by a friend, or you might have found a few reviews before really committing to page 1.
You cannot tell the story before you’ve read it. And even with the best research, you don’t always get a story you expect.
We make decisions, some are highly researched, others recommended by friends. Even with the best plan, sometimes we end up in stories we never imagined ourselves living. Unforeseen events occur and circumstances change. Distractions happen. People let us down.
In fact, I doubt there is a single person on earth who has ended up living the exact story they’ve always imagined. Where’s the excitement in that anyway?
There are definitely moments when life presents you with something you’ve always hoped and dreamed of. I have had the pleasure of experiencing some of these already, and it was certainly worth fighting the battles to savour those moments.
However, there have also been times when the story I imagined once did not come to fruition.
Some of these times I’ve had to watch someone else enjoy the story I once wished for. But then I grew and changed, good things came out of story I did experience, and that original one was no longer important to me anymore.
Other times, I’ve had to learn to let it go and trust that if that story is meant for me, it will happen in the time that it is meant to happen. And that the time for this story is just not right now.
For example, my dream story of backpacking overseas.
The thing that all of these situations have in common is this: they provide an opportunity to build resilience.
By learning to find joy in the present story that I’m living in, even if it’s not what I pictured, I am able to let go of the disappointment that came from my own expectations. I can trust that my deepest dreams will happen when the time is right, and hope that the stories I will experience throughout my life will be better than I could ever imagine.
I am able to continue on another day, joyously embracing live’s twists and turns. I am able to keep reading my life’s story, ready with a sense of anticipation for another surprise.