I like to think of myself as an optimist. In fact, I know quite certainly I am. It’s got to do with the fact that I’m always searching for that silver lining, no matter how dark things may seem. You may look at that as strength, but I count it just as much a hindrance.
When you are only looking for the positives, often that’s all you find. It’s fascinating how powerful perception can be. Sadly, however, no matter how much bliss we impose, it never actually changes reality. Therein lies an all too familiar crossroad for me.
I think back to Monica Geller from Friends, in how obsessive compulsive and controlling she always was. There was a particular scene where Phoebe admits that at one point she tried to “cut [Monica] out” of her life by dodging calls and avoiding seeing her. In response to Monica’s shock and trying to calm her, Phoebe quotably states, “of all the people I’ve cut out, you were the only one who ever clawed her way back in.”
While this situation was presented in a humorous way, it brought light to a problem I had in my life. I realized that like Monica, I initially refuse to accept things that don’t work out. Nothing and no one has ever left me without claw marks to show. If I don’t foresee the end as inevitable, then it doesn’t exist. Maybe this was the downside of my unrelenting optimism?
When I looked back at past relationships, I found a connection to this that devastated me. I realized in dating that I had held onto the men in my life way past our expiration date. In some cases he expressed things were changing, and in others, I knew it but kept tugging on that stupid silver lining.
I let my optimism keep my head in the clouds. Yea, things aren’t perfect, but think about how they’ve been and how they could be! I was suffocating a broken relationship and dragging my soon-to-be ex boyfriend in tow. We would have the same arguments over and over, but I wouldn’t let him leave if he tried. I was determined to make things work.
Eventually of course, that silver lining snapped and cut me back to reality. I look back at those break ups and roll my eyes at myself. I mean, it was so obvious that things weren’t meant to work out, so why couldn’t I see it!? Oh yea, optimism. I let it control me, and in turn lost grasp on the happiness we both ultimately deserved.
I’ve grown to understand now that everything in life has a season. Sometimes they last a short while, maybe a few months, or for the rest of your life. Every person or situation has it’s time and place in your story. I think it’s so important that we accept this in order to start finding balance in our lives, and peace in the winds of change. We are all living and breathing beings with purpose, so we shouldn’t shy away from our best path.
At the end of the day, I’m still grateful for my optimism. I don’t think my life would’ve gone this direction if I didn’t believe I could find what I was searching for. It is a great gift to see the world for what it can be, and not what it is. However, don’t let that light blind you from seeing the truth in your surroundings. Your first love may not be your last, and that’s okay. What’s important in this life, is to seek after the truth as it unfolds, respect your feelings and grow into yourself.
Don’t give up now,
Your best kiss
Your hardest laugh
And your greatest day
Are still yet to come.