Today I had the pleasure of grabbing lunch with a dear friend. During the course of catching up, BB asked me if I regretted my career choices. She’s been following the blog and sensed some regret in regard to the time I spent focused on my job.
The question caught me a little off guard and made me pause. Did a part of me wish I was a little younger and experiencing this opportunity…maybe…sometimes. But there’s no way I can regret my past decisions…they’ve led me to this exact moment in time…and I’m truly happy to be right here, right now.
Is it possible that I could have had a different job and been able to find a more balanced approach to work and my personal life? Is it possible that I might have had fewer frustrations? Fewer days spent traveling away from friends and family? Made more money? Gotten to the spot I’m at now, faster?
Yah, all those things are possible…but there are no guarantees another path would have been as fruitful…as challenging…as rewarding. I believe the end game is defined…our purpose is predestined. But I also believe there are a million ways to get there and you get to chose the level of pain or pleasure based on your decisions.
If I’m honest with myself, I needed the pain to learn the lessons and I’m not sure I’d appreciate this opportunity as much as I do if it hadn’t been as painful as it was. I needed the pain…the struggle…to appreciate the love…the peace.
Prior to this conversation, I’d told BB that I’d asked Mr. Universe to move in. “That was fast”, she replied. Yah, it was fast. But thanks to my past experiences, I know what it feels like when something isn’t right…when I’m moving forward simply because there’s momentum…when I’m doing something because it’s what someone else wants or it’s what I feel is expected of me. I know what it feels like to have my personal space invaded by a male intruder…to feel stuck…confined…trapped.
I don’t feel any of those things with Mr. Universe. It feels right…it’s easy but not so easy that we don’t challenge each other…it feels open and expansive. I feel like I’m able to be myself and I think he feels the same. I like having him around and miss him when he’s not. For the first time, I feel safe with a man…protected…supported…loved.
For the first time in my life, I’m making decisions from a place of love…because they feel right to me. I’m not making them out of fear…I’m not fretting over what people will think. I’m done worrying about societal pressures…expectations…rules.
What I learned from the time I spent focused on my career…from living my 20s and 30s by someone else’s compass, is that time is precious. The first 41 flew by and the next 41 will do the same. I don’t want to have any regrets at 82 or prior. Each day is a gift and I want to live it to the best of my ability. So if asking Mr. Universe to move in feels right, then that’s what I’m gonna do.
Fear is no longer in the driver’s seat…chauffeuring me through life. Love is driving now…fear is regulated to the backseat where he can keep me alert…offering up an occasional gut check. But that’s all. He’s no longer driving…navigating…or controlling the playlist for this road trip.
PS: Thank you Practice Indie for the quote!