Ah, my favorite place to be. My couch on a Sunday afternoon with a tired pup by my side and my contemporary playlist on Spotify, blaring. It’s a weird season in life right now. I continue to set out on these journeys, simply to find that it isn’t mine to embark upon. Maybe it’s happening because God knew I needed some content for this blog.
So I sit here, looking at another relationship that found its end, wondering what all is next on this journey of mine. Please, don’t ask where I’m headed to next. I haven’t the slightest clue. I am trying to lean into what all this entails. Also, no, please don’t throw the, “God has a plan” thing at me either. I know He does. I know it’ll be good. Just let a girl sit in a season for a few. I like my brief moments of wallowing and I like people to allow me to have them. Anyways, now that that’s out of the way…
The other day I was catching up with a friend of mine I met when I was living in North Carolina. We were talking about life and catching up and the conversation evolved into us talking about something I wanted but was nervous to go after. I began throwing those two dangerous words around: what if. Ever since that conversation, I’ve been thinking about those words.
Often I find myself using what if when I’m trying to talk myself out of doing something. It is 110% completely fear-based for me. I like knowing that my actions will reap success. I like knowing the outcome, as I’ve discussed many times in this blog. I look at what could go wrong. My questioning what if is always negative. What if the job isn’t as good as I am hoping? What if I don’t like where I live? What if they say “no”? I’m not much of a questioner of the past but man, do I question the future.
So, as I’m trying to tell my friend every reason to not do something, he finally responded with a dramatic what if. Well, I saw his point. I could play this game all day long. I could play this game for the rest of my life and sit on the sidelines, wondering what happened and how did I become so old and wrinkly with very little of my life having been fully lived.
The thought of what might happen can be paralyzing. As an Enneagram One, I feel like this is especially rough for me. Like, there’s potential for failure if I do XYZ and that just does not fly with the One in my personality. I want guarantees, people.
When my relationship ended last year, I remember he said something about me moving out there. Had I not, we wouldn’t have known that it wasn’t the right time for us. We both agreed on the fact that my moving out there was a risk, yes, but one we were both glad I took. This recent relationship was similar. We had both said we would give it a shot and it, again, just was not the right time. One of the things that I love about both of those situations? We may have asked, what if but we didn’t let that stop us. Isn’t that what love is all about? Hell, isn’t that what life is all about?
I know, I say that now but the next time life requires me to be bold I bet I’ll cower in the corner asking, “But wait, what if this happens!?” Hopefully the length of time in which I reside in that corner of life shortens experience by experience until one day, I’m able to face life boldly without a question of “what if” in my mind. I know I will be because slowly but surely, I find myself doing it more.
The relationship that began right after my the end of my engagement started with an email. I wrote an email back and the final line of my response was this:
I worry that I’ll never figure out [who] I truly am, plagued with a life filled with “what ifs”.
Funny, I was referring to “what ifs” regarding the past when, in fact, my “what ifs” are all about the future. What makes me scoff at myself the most is that I’m able to talk that talk but damn, I don’t walk that walk. Is that still a phrase I can use? That’s probably not cool anymore but oh well. Anyways, I know I have said multiple times to others, “What’s the worst thing that could happen if you do XYZ?” Oh, Dani. Take your own advice sometimes, eh?
My Beautycounter mentor, Chelssie, sent me this quote when I was unsure of whether or not I wanted to jump into this side business of mine:
You do not have to get it perfect, you just have to get it going.
Aside from the fact that it was frightening that someone who knew me for such a brief amount of time knew me well enough to understand this quote would resonate with me, it hit me right in the soul. She was right. What if I don’t succeed? What if it doesn’t turn out the way I want it to? Welcome to life, Dani. Things fail. Hearts break. Business ventures tank. Friendships fizzle. You screw up. Now that the potential what ifs are out of the way and what might happen has been discussed, I think it’s time to move forward and do all I can to ensure that despite those potentials, life is lived boldly.
She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.
– Proverbs 31:25