Everyone now says they knew but that I wouldn't listen. That I wouldn't accept it if they had told me what they thought at the time. Everyone says things in retrospect; especially my monologue when I feel like beating myself up a little extra that day. Coulda, shoulda, woulda. Whatever. It's just air.
I say, at least I tried. At least I believed in the vision enough at the time to live it out. At least I gave that dream a shot knowing it may not last forever. At least I didn't disguise my fear as skepticism at the time. I honored my wishes and trusted my instinct enough to try it out. I've lived.
From here, it feels so much more like a success rather than a failure because it didn't last or because I was hurt along the way, or any other reasons that would typically stall someone from moving forward on an experience. It's only a venture to gain. And I'm living proof I've gained so much more than I would have ever been able to predict.
Most experiences end in one form and continue to evolve in another. So what wise ass made up that terrible word 'failure'? Sounds pretty miserable and a little paranoid.
Ah the butterfly in your stomach that just won't go away...? I'm referring to anything that I have ever taken an honest risk of doing. Anything that took an intentional, powerful and courageous decision because it wasn't safe or backed by a popular consensus. It's a step taken knowing it may not work out. What does last forever anyways? Nothing interesting stays exactly the same. Nothing of value is stagnant. Even the most precious things in your life are constantly evolving and it's why they are so precious to you - because they are still there by your side even when you or he/she/it have evolved. Mutual appreciation, respect and admiration for each other's road map. Period.
The best part - is when you realize that you are the most precious thing. When you realize that when the loudest pat on the back or a nod of approval comes from you, that's when the fun begins. Why does it seem like those things I choose to do for myself, out of my own will and reasons for doing it, tend to be the most fulfilling?; Especially when few can truly understand and sometimes it's even a mystery to me, but my gut keeps pushing me forward. Those are usually the best steps to take, aren't they?
Speaking of retrospect, I've always been that way. Some label it 'stubbornness'. Hard headed. Curious. Maybe I see it all as a gift and that its the only shot we have in the moment we are given. Call it what you will. I have just always done things in my own way. On my own terms. In my own space and design. Regardless of the suggestions or opinions surrounding me. And as much as I can appreciate the intent, and be open to words of wisdom, it's still my life.
That's been the hardest lesson for me and the most rewarding; to walk past the opinions, knowing at the end of the day, I had to see it and do it for myself to really know. And yes, I've seen many of those decisions needing recalibration. Some have left bruises that took a while to heal, but they always do. And I'm thankful for it. I'm so much better for every struggle, for every broken heart, for every frustration and every bit of fear that's crossed my path. I stand much taller now without knowing I could. And I'm so grateful for the here and now. And wide open for what's ahead.
In my short life, I've learned that ends aren't failures. They don't have to be tragic moments of 'wrong' decisions. There is no such thing. They aren't meant to punish or hold you back. They certainly don't say anything about your character or intellect, other than you were brave enough at some point to live.
You made the decision to experience life for yourself. What a tremendous success that is. So I've got to believe that when something comes to an end, it is merely the preparation for something new. It's time for the next step forward.
I've covered a lot more ground in my life by leaping than by standing still.