I think it’s natural to do a lot of reflecting on your younger self. To try and connect to the person you were as a kid, as an adolescent, as a young adult, etc. It’s always interesting to recall the things you hoped for and dreamed about, and to notice the differences in what you expected to happen in your life and what did happen.
I think about my younger self all the time. I think about that high school girl, assuming she had it all figured out, convinced she knew the exact timeline of her life to come. Little did she know, things would go differently than she planned. Much differently.
The funny thing is, if she somehow contacted me now to ask questions about our future, I wouldn’t tell her that it’s bad. I wouldn’t tell her to be devastated for the way things have gone. I wouldn’t tell her that every hard thing we’ve walked through, everything that didn’t go our way, everything that we’d dreamed up that didn’t come true (either yet or at all), doesn’t make this future unsatisfying. It just makes it different.
Still, on my bad days I think about the things that didn’t (or haven’t) happened. I think about the ways my younger self might be bummed. And I think about the things that make me bummed. This future, while hopeful and wonderful in its own way, is different than what I imagined. And sometimes I like to harp on the things that could have gone differently, and on the things that might exist (or still exist) if they had.
But the truth of the matter is, they didn’t.
Things did not go the way I planned.
But things happened. So many things. Good and bad. And I became a better, stronger, more vibrant, confident and understanding person. If I’m being honest with myself, had I gotten what I wanted, when I wanted, I probably would have been lost along the way. And THAT (unlike some of my dreams that can still come true) might have been something I lost forever.
SO, I’m hosting a funeral. And it’s open.
You might have heard of an “open house” before, but this is an “open funeral.”
And by that I mean, anyone is welcome to join—to cohost their own.
Do you have any old daydreams that your mind likes to bring up whenever you’re feeling low?
Do you have any old pictures of your life that like to stand in front of your line of sight, tainting everything you have and making you focus only on what you don’t?
Are you ready to let go of your past expectations and embrace your current reality?
Quite frankly, I’m tired of my mind telling me that because x, y and z didn’t go as I planned: I’m not happy. Or that I’m a failure. Or that I’ve missed the window to find all the good things.
I’m tired of living in the imagined life I could have had, and I’m ready to live the life I’m in.
I’m ready to let that old daydream go. It was a good guess, a beautiful idea, but it’s not what happened. And the sooner I embrace that, the sooner I can find the beautiful here where I truly am.
Do you have any daydreams you’re ready to lay to rest? Do you have any old blueprints for your life that you’re ready to pull off the wall?
Let them go.
They’re not doing you any favors.
Who you are and where you are might not be what you expected, but then, life might have thrown you curveballs you never could have predicted.
Lay the old plans to rest, throw them six feet down. Say a few words and then let them go.
Don’t be afraid to be happy in this new reality, and don’t be afraid to guess again—to daydream again and again.