Sometimes I find it hard to let go. Let go of the past.
Hard to let go of dreams, expectations, “entitlements” and romanticised images of my future. When I get to my “future” it isn’t the way I pictured it through rose coloured glasses.
When I was a girl all I wanted to be was a ballerina. I was incredibly serious about it and then I had to have an X Ray, which revealed quite a few issues and ultimately back surgery.It is honestly not something I like to talk about a lot. However, it is relevant in this context. As I still have trouble letting go. Not in the sense that I still want to be a ballerina, I don’t.
But I have never had so much passion for a “career” or “goal” and I always wonder if I ever will. Sometimes I don’t even try things, because I know they won’t be as wonderful. I was very hesistant to put my girls in dancing, because I didn’t want them to love it the way I loved it and have it not workout. So ridiculous. When we went to Hawaii and they got to Hula on stage and would not stop talking about going back on stage, I realised how ridiculous I was being. My issues are my issues and I should definitely not make them my kids!!! And in reality even though my “dreams” as a 15 year old didn’t work out I got a lot out of dancing and had many many fun times.
I bumped into two girls from my High School recently. They never spoke to me in High School, they were much “cooler” then me. I expected the same coldness from them as adults and almost tried to avoid them. I was blown away when they were sweet, warm and friendly. It made me feel ridiculous. People change, yet my expectations were stuck in the past.
It doesn’t always happen in a negative context either. A great friend from primary school crossed my path and I expected it to be just like old times… kinda weird to admit. I just expected to immediately relate to her. And I did not and I was disappointed. Again, ridiculous.
The thing is that by not letting go of the past I don’t always fully enjoy the future. So maybe I didn’t get to be a ballerina, but honestly it wouldn’t have been the most fun lifestyle… it is hard, would have involved moving away from home really early and sacrificing all sorts of wonderful things. BUT even if it was going to be an amazing and fulfilling lifestyle it wasn’t to be and it is not MY life. And MY life is filled with wonderful things. Amazing things I never dreamt of and could never have set out to achieve! By focusing on what was not or could never have been and by placing expectations on people based on the far away past, it is easy to get caught up in regret and loss and miss out on the wonderful present.
It’s that classic saying that always comes to mind “Stop and Smell the Roses”, but isn’t it the truth!!!
Do you ever get stuck in the past? How do you keep yourself in the present and smelling the roses?