Doing something brave even when it scares you

doing-the-brave-thing

I’ve been feeling this pressure welling up inside of me for months. Like the gentle expansion of a balloon as air is forced into it, stretching and stretching until eventually, it bursts.

 

The stress has been pressing in on me from all sides.

I have felt trapped. Unable to move because every option seems too heavy, too messy or too complicated to pursue.

 

In all honesty, my job has been making me miserable and all this time I’ve been wrestling with this constant dissatisfaction.

 

Because serving people all day long is exhausting. Because waking up at 5am every day is grueling. Because getting told off and feeling on edge all the time is demeaning.

 

And truthfully, I believe I deserve better.

 

But I’ve been too scared to walk away. Because quitting means stepping into the unknown, a future without the security of a job, without a clear plan, without a clue what to do next.

 

Leaving means giving up a regular paycheck and my independence.

 

So I have stayed.

 

I’ve pushed through the negative thoughts and tried to focus on the positive. I’ve thought of tiny, little ways to make each day better. I’ve started going to bed early so the mornings aren’t quite as painful.

 

And yet, I still feel the pressure. I still feel the dissatisfaction. I still feel myself yearning for something more.

 

Happiness, excitement and creativity are calling out me. Begging me to do the brave thing. Quickening my heart and filling my head with dreams that I long to make come true.

 

Finally, after months of this internal battle, I decided to quit my job.

 

Now I feel sick. Now I feel free. Now I feel I am finally being true to myself.


 

There have been so many moments this year where I have felt that queasy, is-this-the-right-thing-or-a-terrible-mistake feeling.

 

So many times I’ve doubted myself, grappled with the uncertainty and clung to the familiar instead of choosing the brave thing.

 

I don’t blame myself.

 

Doing the brave thing is hard. Going out on a limb is terrifying. Stepping into the unknown takes so much courage.  

 

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We get these rare moments every now and then where we can choose to take the easy route or do the brave thing.

 

Should we date that guy? Should we take that job? Should we move to a new city? Should we go back and study?

 

To me it feels a lot like rock climbing. You don’t really know which of the oddly-shaped hand holds to grab until you let go of the last one and stretch your arm up to grab the next one.

 

For a split second you are dangling in mid-air, gripping nothing, with only your sheer focus and determination driving you forwards.

 

Sometimes you grab the wrong handhold. One of those small, knobbly ones that makes your sweaty hands slip right off.

But other times you are lucky enough to reach for one with a proper indentation, one that makes pulling yourself up easy.


 

Sometimes being brave is just about doing the next right thing. Sitting still long enough to recognize your wants and needs.

 

The brave thing might be the opposite of what everyone else says you should do. It might make you unpopular. It might take everything you’ve got.

 

But the brave thing is worth it.

 

A little over five months ago I said another scary yes and started dating a guy who’s ended up becoming my best friend.

 

Every part of me wanted to keep my tattered little heart locked up safe where no guy could ever trample on it again but instead I chose to share it with him. I chose to open up and give love another chance.

 

It turns out this was the best yes I’ve said in a long time.

 

doing-the-brave-thing

 

So here I am again doing the brave thing even though it scares me.

Reaching out for the next handhold, unsure whether it will be able to support me. Going out on a limb because I know life is full of surprises if we are willing to take a chance.

 

We can fool ourselves into believing that it is only special people who do incredible things. That only very few, lucky people are truly happy. But I think that’s wrong.

 

The truly happy people, the ones who have done and are doing amazing things are the ones who are willing to do the brave things.

 

They aren’t any different to you and me. They just pushed past the fear and said yes anyway. They just bottled away enough courage to leap forwards.

 

They just believed in themselves enough to think it might just be worth a try.

 

And that’s what you need to do today.

Believe in yourself and do the brave thing, even (especially) if it scares you.

When wishing for the weekend becomes a way of life

Wednesdays are the hardest day of the week for me. Mondays tend to get a bad rap but I am not convinced they are really so bad.

 

On Monday I feel refreshed after having two days off. I usually have had more than eight hours sleep the night before, my feet aren’t aching from being stood on all day and most often, I still have the enthusiasm to pack a decent lunch.

 

But come Wednesday, I’ve got two days worth of dishes piling up in the sink, clothes strewn all over the floor and I can hardly keep my eyes open when I first wake up.

 

It takes every ounce of willpower I have to muster the strength to get out of bed.

 

On Wednesdays I always end up questioning what I am doing with my life. I am always especially critical of myself. And I always find myself beginning to long for the weekend.


 

That’s the way it goes.

 

We spend the weekdays longing for the weekend and we spend the weekend wishing the weekdays wouldn’t come too soon.

 

In my family we have a special term for that melancholy, Sunday night feeling. ‘Sundaytitis’ was the simultaneous feeling of contentment from a weekend of rest and sadness knowing that tomorrow work would begin again.

 

The truth is, I spend 5/7 days each week wishing my life away. Longing for the rest, joy and fullness I feel on the weekend.

 

But I don’t just do this with weekdays and Wednesdays either, I’m guilty of doing it with whole seasons of my life.

 

I constantly find myself wishing I could jump past the boring, stressful and painful parts of life and skip to the good bits. I want to fast forward. I want every day to feel like the weekend, like the first day of summer, like the beginning of a holiday.


 

Some days I feel the tears of frustration well up in my eyes because the reality is, we can’t fast forward. There is no skipping to the highlights.

 

We can’t avoid the Wednesdays, the crappy days and the just-plain-unfair-for-no-particular-reason days.

 

To get enjoy all of the wonderful times we must live through the bleak times as well.

 

Life is this infuriating balance of dull and beautiful, dark and light, work and rest. We need the contrast for completeness. We need the variety to keep up our momentum.

 

I feel this becomes apparently clear as the days are getting longer and the air is getting warmer.

 

Summer is romancing us with lavish sunshine and an abundance of blooms. It’s sweet and makes my soul happy but I know eventually I will tire of the relentless heat.  

Soon the humidity will feel overwhelming and once again I’ll be longing for the coolness of winter.

 

We think winter is boring and cold. We are stuck inside and it gets dark far too early and getting out of bed is the worst torture known to man. But in reality, winter is a blessing.

 

A break from the play-filled summer months. A time for the leaves to die off and seeds to burrow down into the soil.

 

A necessary pause in the middle of the year to slow us down as we glide closer and closer to Christmas.

 

Wednesdays are the same. Smack bang in the middle. A chance to pause and catch our breaths.

 

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Something my Granny always says is that getting old happens much faster than you could imagine. She often remarks that one day I’ll wake up and suddenly be her age wondering where my whole life went.

 

And every time she says this, I will smile and nod at her just like she did to her grandmother.

 

But I know she is right.

 

Time is no friend of the young.

 

I see the wrinkles appearing already. They start at the corner of your eyes, just when you smile and eventually the creases become permanent, etching outwards towards the tips of your ears.

 

Our time is so very precious. I don’t want to wish it away. I don’t want to get so caught up in longing for the next big thing that I miss what is right in front of me.

 

The wonder in every day. The delight in simply being alive. The gift of another day on this planet.

 

I want to do my best to make every day special. To make every day count. To feel I have participated in a worthy exchange; a day of my life for the laughter, love, and beauty shared.

 

This isn’t easy to do, given how hectic and complicated our lives get. I think it is a spiritual practice, something that takes discipline and a sense of gratitude.

 

An awareness of those elusive, divine moments that are sprinkled throughout every day. If we blink we might miss them, so we have to practice keeping our eyes and our hearts open and receptive to them.


 

Today might be dull. It might be dreary, rainy, slow or somber. But it is a day of your life that you will never get back.

 

So make it count. Search for the goodness, hope for more, keep gratitude at the centre of who you are.

 

Before you know it, you’ll be seventy five telling your grand daughter the very same thing.

P.S. If you are looking for a really excellent movie that focuses on the same idea as this post then check out ‘About Time.’ It’s one of my favourites!

Feeling lost and finding your purpose

feeling-lost-and-finding-your-purpose

The dry season is the hardest.

When the ground is parched and cracks under foot.
When the grass withers beneath the incessant sun.
When the waves of heat ripple across the pavement all day long.

Faith is no struggle when the rain falls without prayer.
But when there are no clouds in sight, that’s when faith becomes more than a silent obligation.

The wilderness is a lonely place.
Dry and unforgiving.
Empty and deafeningly quiet.

The only place I know where being lost means finding yourself.


 

Do you ever feel as though as soon as one thing goes right, another falls apart?
It seems to be one of those rules of life.

 

A truth of adulthood.

 

We fix the broken tap and find a leak in the roof. It is almost impossible to stay on top of everything, all the time.

 

Lately I’ve found myself falling into a state of stress because I can’t decide what I want to do with my life.

I feel this rising panic in my chest because I don’t know where to place my feet like I’m constantly walking down the stairs and missing the last step.

 

I hate to be a cliche but it seems that is what I have become. The college graduate having an identity crisis…what’s new?

 

But to be completely honest, I feel totally lost.

 

Before this, everyone was always telling you who you are. And most of the time you are encouraged to fit in and be the same as everyone else.
You dress in a uniform, you take the subjects your parents think are best for you, you go to college and then suddenly…the voices stop.

 

You are on your own.

The silence is chilling. The blankness is unnerving.

 

The choices are all yours and you suddenly find yourself wishing for the comfort and familiarity of those loud voices you once despised.


 

For the first time in my life I have found myself becoming despondent.

There are too many options I could possibly choose and it leaves me feeling so exhausted that I choose nothing. I choose to remain stagnant.

I freeze up in fear of what might happen if I were to open one of the doors before me and step through it.

 

This despondency appears as a lack of inspiration. Words used to flow effortlessly from me. My fingers would caress the keyboard and my ideas would come to life before my eyes.
But now I struggle with that blinking cursor. It taunts me as I stare at the blankness of my screen.

 

An absence of words shows an absence of peace. I am restless. I am wallowing. I am floundering.

 

This is the wilderness.

 

The dry, empty, lost place. The space where we find ourselves wandering around blindly. The spot where we struggle to remember who we are and where we belong.


 

The wilderness gives us an opportunity to grow.

 

In this place of nothing and no one we are reminded of what matters most to us.

For me, that is people, my pace of life and my passions.

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People.

When I feel lost, nothing sets me straight like spending time with those I love most.
Those who know me, truly know me and love me all the same.

 

Those who have been through all of the previous wilderness places with me and have the postcards I sent them to prove it.

Those who challenge me everyday to be better and try harder because they believe in me, even if I don’t.

 

When it comes down to it, there are a handful of precious people in this world who will always have your back.

They’ll hold you when it feels like your world is falling apart. They’ll show you how to laugh when sadness is all you know. And they’ll gently guide you till you find your way back home.

 

Pace of life.

Nothing causes me to burn out faster than overfilling my plate and over committing myself.

But recently I’ve realized this issue runs deeper than the fullness of my schedule, it’s to do with my entire environment.

 

I hate the hustle and bustle of living in the city. I hate that everyone is always in a hurry, so impatient, so unforgiving. I hate that this concrete jungle consumes us. Swallows us whole and spits out these grumbling, flustered, irritable people.

 

I miss the fresh air of the country. I miss seeing people I know and actually taking the time to chat with them. I miss driving anywhere and finding a free parking spot.

 

So it is the wilderness that reminds me to slow down. And perhaps to seek out calmer places for me to live, work and stay. The city is fine for a while but I know now that my heart belongs in the country.

 

Passions.

In this confusing place I’m seeking out the things that make me feel most alive. The things that make me feel happy and excited to get up in the morning.

 

The things that make me, me.

 

I miss dressing up everyday. I miss wearing pretty outfits with matching shoes and fun accessories.

I miss feeling inspired to write. Carrying around an ideas notebook and stopping randomly to fill a page because I simply must spill my ideas down immediately.

I miss taking the time to prepare food that I love and that makes me feel good rather than shoveling food into my mouth as I rush out the door.


 

I hate the wilderness.

 

It feels so unnerving. So lonely. So indefinite.

 

But perhaps, the wilderness is what I need.

Maybe wandering out here is necessary before I leap forwards into something new.

 

Because in the wilderness we are lost and we find ourselves.
We are broken and remade.
We are emptied so that we can be filled once more.

 

The wilderness doesn’t last forever…eventually we will find our place again.

My body, my home

my-body-my-home

Mirrors, they are forever betraying me.

Enlarging my flaws.

Highlighting my weaknesses.

Pinpointing my insecurities.

A sheet of glass that always manages to find my achilles heel.

 

Why are my eyes so puffy in the morning?

Are my thighs really always that big?

I scrutinize every inch of myself until my stomach feels sick.

 

But it’s not the mirror who despises me.

It’s not the glass that leaves me feeling this way.  

It’s my own head, my own thoughts that betray me, conditioned to believe beauty is only skin deep.

 

I shake the horrible thoughts out of my head. I hug my arms around myself.

I will not fight my own flesh anymore.

This is my body, this is my home.


 

I have always had a tentative relationship with my body.

 

There have been times when I have treated it poorly. Depriving it, over exerting it, attempting to squeeze it into jeans that were never designed for these hips.

 

Our relationship is one filled with one-sided animosity.

 

It seemed unfair to me that as I grew up, I expanded in some areas and not others. Like a balloon blown up all wonky instead of precisely into the standard shape.

 

I thought that women came in a standard shape too.

 

Blonde hair, check. Blue eyes, check. But what happened to my large breasts and tiny waist? Where is my golden tan and long, lean legs?

 

It seemed some pieces were missing from this perfect puzzle.

 

So I wrestled with my body for years. Desperately trying to manipulate it into that ideal shape and degrading this home of mine in the process.

 

Allowing weeds to take over the flowerbeds. Letting paint start to chip. Not worrying about the cracks in the ceiling or wallpaper beginning to fade.

 

Making it look from the outside as though everything was as it should be but on the inside I was crumbling into disrepair.  


 

But I thought I had put all of that behind me. I thought I had made peace with my body. I thought I was finally free from this crippling, self-loathing mindset.

 

In the back of my mind I always knew that my body would eventually change, I was under no illusion that I would stay the size of a twenty year old forever. I just didn’t expect gaining weight to affect me so much.

 

But it has.

 

I was surprised how quickly the tears would come when I looked at myself in the mirror. I was shocked just how easily I allowed guilt to dictate what I ate. I was saddened to watch myself slipping back into the same old habits and not knowing what to do to stop it.

 

Because it’s easy to love your body when it fits the mold. It’s not difficult to have self compassion when you believe you are the right size.

 

It’s when my jeans began to feel too tight and my stomach still stuck out a little even when I was sucking it in that I discovered how difficult self love really is.

 

Self love is not something that comes naturally like taking a breath as you come out of water or blinking when a bright light flashes.

 

Learning how to love myself, my new self  has been hard.

 

Possibly one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. Which perhaps makes me sound vain and conceited but in a world which constantly reminds me that I need to change in order to fit in and be lovable, it’s not surprising at all.

 

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I’ve been down this road now a few times and I’ve learnt that restriction and shame are not the answer. Loathing myself or fighting against my body just doesn’t work.

 

So it seems that a new attitude is in order.

 

I cannot be at war with myself anymore. It’s too exhausting. I cannot just sit idly by while the place I live begins to fall apart.

 

This is my body, this is my home.

 

And so I remind myself each and every day…

 

My worth is not dependent on my weight.

 

While this body is my home, it is not my full person.

 

I am singing along to country music with the windows down driving along the highway. I am laughing at the ocean waves lapping around my ankles and squealing when the water gets too high. I am giving a cheeky wink to my Father on stage at our school production. 

 

You cannot contain me within the walls of this body, I am more than layers of flesh and a foundation of bones.

 

I am a gentle warmth, a cool breeze, a soft whisper.

 

My body is remarkable and it deserves my utmost respect.

 

To diminish its purpose to simple aesthetics is outrageous.

 

This body can run for miles and miles. This body can hear a rhythm and melt into the music. This body can heal itself, transform itself and grow another whole human being inside of it.

This body is incredible.

 

Change is inevitable, adaptation is crucial.

 

Nothing in this life stays the same forever. It has often been said that change is the only constant.

Therefore, I will not be surprised nor phased by change, I will simply adapt and move forwards.

 

A changing body means a life that is progressing. We are growing older and wiser. We are tracking towards new adventures and achievements.


 

Women aren’t like balloons. We don’t come in a standard shape or size. We are unique and that is something that should be celebrated rather than diminished.

 

Trying to squeeze us into one mold is a crying shame. There is so much beauty in our diversity. There is so much wonder in our individuality. 

 

When I look at the women in my life I feel that this is a battle that might not be won overnight. Because I’ve seen these precious ladies fighting against their bodies my whole life.

 

But that makes me no less determined to win this war of self compassion.

 

If not for me than for my daughters, my nieces, my best friends. For every woman who looks up to me and watches how I treat this place I call home.

 

I hope they will see something different in me. A deeper respect, an honest disposition, an abundance of grace.

 

A woman who bears the wrinkles of decades of laughter. Who proudly wears stretch marks from bringing new life into the world. Who has freckles from glorious summers in the sunshine and perhaps carries a little extra weight for all the meals that make life worth living.

 

I believe that in the end, the struggle is worth it.

 

Because this is my body, this is my home.

To all the boys I’ve loved before…

love-lessons

I have spent much of my life trying to figure out what love looks like.

 

For so long I was mesmerized by the Disney princess tales of Prince Charming and knights on white horses. I lived for the glittery romance and thrilling passion of these love stories.

 

Over the years I have discovered that the real life versions of these stories come with so much more trials and heartbreak.

 

The frogs seem to outnumber the princes.

The days spent in high castles waiting to be rescued seem to be endless.

The happily ever after often requires tears and compromise and a whole lot of things which must be written in the fine print in the Disney tales.

 

But as brutal as it is, I love the tragedy of our real life love stories. I love the high stakes, the tangible expressions, the depth that cartoons cannot begin to capture.

 

I just wish I had known love wasn’t meant to be hard.

 

I think love should be soft like freshly washed sheets and warm like the morning sunshine on your back. Love should be gentle like a boat bobbing along a small stream and safe like your bedroom when a storm is battering outside on the windows.

 

You shouldn’t have to make them want to be with you. They should just want to be with you.

 

You shouldn’t have to become someone else for them. They should just love you for the wonderful person that you are.

 

You shouldn’t have to try so hard because love should be easy.

 

And so with this in mind I wanted to reminisce on my past loves…the lessons I’ve learnt from them and the poems they inspired.

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To the ones that didn’t know I existed…

 

Oh how I obsessed over you. If you only knew all the silly nicknames I gave you. If you could only see all the journals I covered with your name.

 

You gave me a first glimpse of the intensity of love.

 

You showed me just how overwhelming, confusing and all-consuming these feelings can be. You taught me that I can bounce back rather quickly from heartbreak and that crushes aren’t really love at all. 

 

Crushes are superficial and hardly ever based on facts. Whereas, love is substantial, built on truth and knowing more about someone than their favourite ice cream flavour.

 

To the one who didn’t want me…

 

I tried to be the girl for you, oh I tried so hard.

 

I laughed at your jokes before I understood the punchline. I walked at your pace even though my legs were working twice as hard as yours. I listened intently when you talked about politics though I thought it was about as interesting as watching the washing machine swirl my clothes around.

 

I suppose it’s not your fault, I fell for you and you didn’t even know it. But that’s the way you are, stuck inside your head you leave little room for emotions. So of course you had no inkling of mine.

 

But you taught me what a gift it is to feel so strongly. What I take for granted is such a struggle for some. You reminded me how precious it is to know love and how difficult yet thrilling it is to express it.

love-lessons

 

To the one who wanted to be ‘just friends…’

 

I thought you were different. I thought this time it might stick. I thought perhaps if I wished it hard enough, you would want me enough to stay.

 

But I was wrong.

 

We should have only ever been friends. You shouldn’t have toyed with my heart the way you did. You should have been honest from the start instead of allowing me to push you into a relationship you weren’t interested in.

 

But you taught me how much it hurts to love someone that doesn’t feel the same. And you reminded me how good it feels to love so even though losing you almost tore me in two, I knew I would search forever to find someone who would let me love them like you couldn’t.

love-lessons

 

To the one who loved me back…

 

I promised myself I’d never write soppy love poems or I’d certainly never publish them but for you I will make an exception.

 

Because I cannot talk about heartbreak and hopeless love without mentioning how it feels when it goes right.

 

So here it is. You are my sunshine, my safe place and my favourite song I could keep singing all day long.

 

You taught me how to love myself again. You showed me what trust looks like. You made vulnerability seem so effortless. You took the hardest thing in the world- opening up my heart again- and made it feel like the easiest.

love-lessons


 

It has always frustrated me that we have to live life forwards. With the knowledge we gain, in hindsight we would do things so differently.

 

But that’s the way life is. We can’t dwell on the past but rather try our best to make the future better.

 

It gives me great joy to know that the experiences I’ve had and the lessons I’ve learnt because of them have shaped me into the person who I am today. And that through these experiences I can help others learn from my mistakes and hopefully do better than me.

 

And so I hope that this will be true for you.

 

That you will continue to love with your whole heart but to only share it with those truly deserving of it.

 

Remember, love is really quite simple…if they love you, they’ll make sure you know it.

Feeling like a failure… when life doesn’t go as planned

feeling-like-a-failure

Yesterday I tried for the third time to make chocolate eclairs.

Because is there anything on this earth more divine than the combination of the light, fluffy pastry, thick, rich custard and silky, chocolate ganache?

Eating an eclair is such an alluring prospect that I am willing to struggle time and time again to make them perfectly.

 

And each and every time, I am stumped as to how it all goes so wrong. The first two trials I followed the recipe to the letter and still my eclairs looked disappointingly nowhere close to the picture.

 

But in my flurry to bake yesterday I misread the recipe and accidentally missed out an entire cup of flour from the pastry. And even though I noticed and quickly tried to make amends it was too late, the mixture refused to thicken.

 

I thought that adding the eggs would help coagulate the dough but to no avail. I then put my hopes in the cooking of the pastry.

But unfortunately, they came out of oven looking deflated like a rugby ball that had been mistakenly driven over by a truck.

 

By this point I was extremely put out. I’d already used far too many eggs and a tonne of butter so there really was no going back.

 

After a brief reprieve I returned to tackle the custard filling. I then carefully sandwiched pairs of the flattened, pastry blobs together and merrily sprinkled the whole lot with icing sugar.

 

They weren’t chocolate eclairs but the custard provided an adequate distraction so that everyone ate them without complaint.


 

If there is one thing I have learnt over the past year it is that life is full of these kinds of setbacks and surprises.

 

When embarking on new adventures and sailing into uncharted territory, we are bound to make a few blunders.

 

We hardly ever get things right the first time around. More often than not our chocolate eclairs look more like flattened footballs than the perfect image we found in a recipe book.  

 

What has taken me by surprise is that the setbacks I most often come across are due to my wayward imagination and lofty expectations.

 

I’m a dreamer whose eyes are always starry with thoughts of the future. With dreams so vast and expansive it is hardly surprising that I find reality to be bitter and unkind.

 

I thought the year after graduation would be different. I thought I would breeze into a job and finally find my place in this world. I thought I would know what I want and I’d hop onto the career ladder just the same as everyone else.

 

But this year saw me working part time as a shop assistant, then unemployed for three months and finally working again as a waitress.

 

And a little part of me feels like a failure.

 

Because college graduates are supposed to have real jobs. Because adults should be working 9-5 and focusing on serious, obtainable goals. Because by now I should have a plan, a path forwards and an answer for when people ask me what it is that I want to do.

 

But I still have no answer. I still have no plan. I still don’t have a real job.

 

I’m not the woman that 12 year old me hoped I would become. As far as she is probably concerned, I am a failure.

 

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But who decides what is success and what is failure? Who sets where the goalposts lie? Who has the right to tell me how I should live my life?

 

I do.

 

I’m only a failure if I believe so. I’m only a loser if I give up on myself. I’m only hopeless if once I fall, I refuse to get up and try again.

 

I suppose that success looks different to me now then when I was a little girl. It’s less about finding the perfect job, husband and house.

 

Success for me now means knowing who I am. It means being true to myself and living each day in a way that makes me proud.

 

Loving people even when I feel tired and impatient.

Creating something out of nothing and sharing it with the world.

Challenging myself to face my fears, push the limits and try new things.


 

What I am realizing is that following your own path instead of sticking to the status quo does not make you a failure.

 

Success doesn’t necessarily look the same for everyone so comparison is fruitless. 

 

The truth is, nobody really has a clue what they are doing. Most of us are stumbling along, figuring it out as we go.

 

So perhaps my life doesn’t look they way I thought it would at almost 22 but that’s part of what makes life beautiful…its total unpredictability.


 

I’m going to attempt to make eclairs again. I cannot resist, the sweetness or the challenge.

I’ll probably fail a few more times but one day I won’t.

 

One day the choux pastry will rise and stay crisp. One day the eclairs will retain their proper, elongated shape. One day I will bake them, fill them, ice them and present them to the oohs and ahhs of my loved ones.

 

That’s what success looks like to me.

 

Never, never, never giving up.