I don’t know how long it takes for things to come together. For the wrongs to be right. For the lessons to sink in and for the mistakes to stop repeating themselves. I don’t know how long it takes for you to face your own truths, to win your internal battles, to have an honest conversation with yourself and ask the hard questions until you stop running away from the answers when they’re not the answers you hoped they’d be.
I don’t know how long it takes for life to start making sense or for your dreams to come true or for your happiness to stop evading you. I don’t know how long it takes until you can rest your head on the pillow and sleep peacefully without carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. I don’t know how long it takes for you to wake up and find everything you’ve ever wanted waiting for you in the morning.
But I do know that you have to believe that it’s right around corner, that it’s going to happen sooner than you think, that things have a way of turning around in the blink of an eye, that your happy ending is not an elusive fantasy but a reality waiting for the right moment to enter your life.
I know you carry with you the heaviness of a painful past and the emptiness of broken relationships. I know you carry burdens from your family and heartaches from your past lovers but I also know that these are just crumbs of things that have already burnt. These are just remnants of hitting rock bottom and all you have to do is dust yourself off and step into your new power, your new light, your new life. A life that’s not defined by anything that you didn’t have control over or anyone who has deeply hurt you. A life that’s not defined by old wounds or hidden scars.
Because the beauty of life is that you can always redefine it, you can always change it, you can always rewrite your story if you no longer want to live the same old one.
And yes I’m aware that there are things in life you can’t control and things that you can’t really change but I also know that these roadblocks are not in your life so you can turn the other way and drive off, they’re there so you can find a way around them, to figure out a new way to get to your destination without backing up. They’re there so you can learn how to keep moving instead of standing still.
I don’t know if there’s a manual that teaches you how to maneuver these roadblocks but I do know that sometimes you might have to write your own manual. And I don’t know if you’ll ever master or perfect the art of penetrating these roadblocks but I do know that every time you try, a new street opens up, you notice a new sign, you find a new direction, you see a lamppost that lights up the way and shows you what’s ahead of you. You discover something that makes the journey a little less terrifying.
You learn that there’s always something better waiting for you after every roadblock. A little detour that takes you to a whole new path that would have stayed out of sight had you stopped. You eventually learn that roadblocks are not trying to ruin your life, they’re trying to move you into another direction that brings you closer to where you truly belong.
I know we’re only halfway through the year but I can already say that 2018 will be a year to remember. I can already sum up what the last 7 months were trying to teach me in three words; lead with faith.
I’ve never been much of a planner because I’m not good at planning anything, especially when it comes to my life but for the past 3 years I planned everything to a T because all I wanted was for my life to be in order and fall into place because I was tired of running around and being lost and just going with the flow. So I took control and while it did give me the stability that I was looking for, it robbed me out of my happiness, my spontaneity, my zest for life and adventure.
I was always worried about tomorrow, about how many hours I have left in the day to go through all my plans, about how many months left until I’m one year older with a societal checklist I needed to strike off so I can catch up with all my friends who got married, had kids and are planning their next family vacation to Europe.
I was beginning to lose sight of what I wanted for myself because I was told that I needed to be more organized, more logical, more put together and more traditional. I was told that I needed to be anything but myself.
And I’d be lying if I said it didn’t work for me, after all, there’s a reason why people conform, it’s easier there. It’s a little bit more predictable. It’s a little less chaotic.
Until I was standing one day looking at the cookie as it crumbles piece by piece right in front of my eyes. I was standing there stoic. Watching everything I’ve ever built collapse. Watching all my plans make a U-turn. Watching every single dream of mine evaporate.
And then it hit me, I planned for everything but I forgot to plan for the day when all the plans stop working. I forgot to plan for the day I lose. I was so focused on winning that I didn’t think losing was even an option.
But today, as I begin to pick up the pieces slowly, I can safely say I’m leading with faith. I still don’t have a steady plan. I still don’t know my final destination. I still have a lot of things to fix but I am leading with faith and it’s making me feel alive again.
Faith that I’m right where I’m supposed to be. Faith that the things I thought I lost were actually triumphs in disguise. Faith that those hard 7 months were exactly the fuel I needed to take off and land somewhere new. Faith that the change I need in my life is coming and it’s going to be bigger and brighter than what I had planned for myself.
Because that’s the beauty of leading with faith, it rewards you in the end. You don’t lose when you lead with faith. You can only win.
The other day my friend was telling how we should all believe that we are larger than life and how we shouldn’t let the hard times or the wrong people make us feel small or insignificant. At first, I laughed at her ‘larger than life’ comment but then I thought about it, why is it so hard for us to believe that we are larger than life and that better things are actually coming our way? Why can’t we just lead with the kind of faith that makes us feel powerful, strong and loved? Why can’t we just breathe and believe that things will be okay?
And that’s what I’m going to start doing. I’m leading with faith. I’m walking into an unknown universe with open arms because I’m not scared anymore. I have something within me that’s larger than life…. and you — you have it too.