Sunday, September 16, 2012
I used to get all excited when something good was coming up. Butterflies, sweaty palms, heart pounding hard, you know the symptoms. Like most, sometimes the moment arrived with a bang, other times a little less.
OK, maybe a LOT of times, I was left wondering why I was excited to begin with. Eventually, like the Colorado running through Arizona, I wore down and started to realize that my expectations were probably NOT going to be met. Today, I literally expect nothing to happen and not surprisingly, nothing happens more often than not. It doesn't sound or even feel like a fun way to live. Constantly looking at the negative has it's downside for sure. And yet, I wonder if it IS a better alternative to the crushing disappointment that comes with unrealized dreams.
I used to tell my crew to plan for the worst, then, all other options will be an improvement. In business, that is a great way to be successful. It may be more work, but the results are easier to deal with when you have a plan in place from the start. Why can't you use this in your personal life?
I was reminded of this when I tried to catch up with my first serious girlfriend. She represented the past. A past that, if I followed, would have led me to a much different life. I was much, much less of a man when I knew her. Stupid and insecure, a walking cliché. I felt ugly and unloved, yet this girl was attracted despite it. How could that be???
I learned years later that I wasn't so bad, wasn't so ugly, and could actually be a good friend to the opposite sex. I felt lucky I got to realize it at all. It took over 30 years, but I got there. I had seen how I really was and I didn't like it. I changed and am still evolving. Since we aren't ever perfect, it's a lifetime journey. How early you board that train is up to you.
When I was wondering what happened with this significant young lady from my past, what was on my mind? Obviously, I wanted to know how the last thirty years had treated her, what has she done, what is she proud of, and what were her memories of that long-ago time spent with me.?
Turns out, I don't really find out at all.
We spoke on the phone a bit, and set a time for the next day. We would catch up over lunch and hopefully, not hate each other after. I guess the phone call was enough for her because she never showed. Was I surprised? Nope. Like I said, I expect nothing. I waited for 20 minutes, and went about my day. No ill feelings, no sense of disappointment.
Do I wish for a different ending to this story?
I didn't even attend my 30th class reunion last week. For the longest time, I had good feelings while reminiscing and wondering. Yet, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that if anyone wanted to catch up with me, I am VERY easy to find. My Mom lives in the same house and I am just a Google search away from a nice conversation.
The only times I HAVE caught up were ones that I made the call or sent the message. In 30 years not once (that I remember) has anyone bothered to ask what's up. I'm not complaining, just stating facts. When I REALLY thought about THAT, I was OK with not going to the reunion. My life is fine. I am not missing anyone or anything. I don't need closure or to rekindle any sparks I may have had a lifetime ago. While I am always curious about people's lives, these folks have a life that is full without me in it. If anyone is curious about me, I'm right here...