Life’s Too Short
One summer night a long time ago, my boyfriend and I were walking through the city. It was rainy and misty outside and I kept fussing about my hair and worrying that it was getting frizzy and messed up. My boyfriend finally got fed up and said to me, ‘Who cares? life’s too short, just enjoy yourself.’ And for some reason, I really got the message. And felt foolish about my constant need for perfection and control of my circumstances.
I learned a big lesson that night. and I think of it often when I find myself fussing and stressing myself out over dumb little things. It’s not the end of the world if things don’t go just right, or just the way I planned or imagined. I really learned that from him. As everything that went wrong before in my life used to be like a big tragedy to me. And I wouldn’t let it go, bemoaning the unfairness of it all.
It was really immature and I’m not sure where I got that mindset from. It used to be (and still is at times) so hard for me to just let go of things and expectations and just relax and go with the flow. It’s something that I’m still working on in fact. And something that I hope I can improve about myself.
I remembered this lesson again recently when my boss asked me what my plans were for the Memorial Day weekend. I didn’t really have any plans so I told her that, and she suggested that I go to the beach. I said I wouldn’t because it was supposed to rain I think it was that sunday, and she said, ‘So who cares? You’ll get wet, just go anyway!’
And I thought, there it is again: the need for something to be perfect, at the expense of doing something just for the hell of it. Just to get away somewhere. And then I thought about the fact that I have never let myself get caught in the rain. I always seem to be prepared. And being so prepared for every little inconvenience in life is probably costing me some living.
So when I feel a deep need for control over something, I have to remind myself to let go and just let things be how they will be. Just because I spend one sunny day at home, it doesn’t mean that will be my last chance ever to enjoy a sunny day.
I could go out and be having the time of my life when I’m 36 or 41 or 47. I tend to have this all-or-nothing type of attitude. It does not do me any good and causes much unneeded stress, but I’m grateful that now at least I am aware of it enough to catch myself when my mind wants to latch on to some outcome, when I pin all my hopes onto trivial things.
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