I am nowhere near where I want to be. Sometimes my toothpaste falls off my toothbrush before I start brushing my teeth. Sometimes I stain my shirt with the breakfast I ate that same morning. Sometimes the whole theme of my week is recurring silly incidents, kind of like the toothpaste.
But sometimes I feel this fire in my step. Despite making errors along the way, I feel this unstoppable trait that I can’t help but cling to. And when I do, I like the person who I am becoming, even though it is not perfect.
There is an unspoken assumption that people who are successful are hovering over perfection. Perfection meaning they have their lives staged out like a Disney script: happily ever after, with the wife or the husband and the house and the cute dog. But the truth is we don’t see their journey and we don’t see the behind the scenes with the fallen toothpaste, stained shirts, and minor setbacks.
I am learning my journey is accepting that sometimes growth is minute. A moon becomes full after 29.5 days, an oak tree takes 20 years to grow an acorn, and just like you, they grow slowly, not all at once.
It means that things don’t happen overnight. And frankly, I think it is a blessing in disguise that we don’t achieve everything we want in life all at once.
Because life happens in the in-betweens. Life happens in the evening cuddles. Life happens in the heart-to-hearts at 1 a.m. with a creeping hangover. Life happens when you wake up each morning thinking about the ones you love. Life happens in the moments you choose to spend your time on a Sunday afternoon. Life happens when you get back on your feet and choose to push past a failure. Life happens in your interactions with strangers. Life happens every day at your 9-5 when you are complaining about something or someone. Life is happening now.
I don’t think it is about having everything together; that would be exhausting. But each day you get 24 hours to live. You get seven full days each week, and 12 full months each year to make strides.
I think your journey is about living each day self-aware. I think it is about embracing your strengths and understanding your weaknesses. It is about finding your purpose, what encourages you to get out of bed each morning, and working towards it. Constantly.
Maybe it won’t be perfect. Maybe it will be messy, but that’s real and that’s the truth. Most importantly, that’s the journey.