Sunday, December 27, 2015

Life Happens OR Does It?

"Life happens" is a saying I've heard thrown around a lot throughout my life. What does it really mean though? Life gets in the way of your dreams? Really? Isn't it life we are living everyday and aren't your dreams part of it? Does it mean bad things happen so we must learn to deal with it and just keep moving forward? However, isn't that really a road block in your journey through life instead of life itself? 
Here are a couple of quotes using this saying:
"Transformation is a process, and as life happens there are tons of ups and downs. It's a journey of discovery - there are moments on mountaintops and moments in deep valleys of despair."
"I believe that we can, in a deliberate way, articulate the kind of people we want to become. We can articulate the culture that we would want to exist in our family, and you can then, as the rest of life happens to you, you can utilize those things to help you become the kind of person you want to be."

While I don't believe "Life Happens," I do believe things happen to us during our lifetime and how we handle those things is what makes our life journey sometimes good, sometimes bad and some may say even for a reason. No matter why something happens to us throughout our lives, we always have a choice to direct our path through life. I don't believe we don't have a choice ever. We may not like the options in front of us to choose from but there are options. If we are lucky, we may see or be able to create a choice not originally presented to us. But the point I'm making is can make life what you want just doesn't happen to you, good or bad.

My dream is to be an author. Not just an author of two books but of many books. I love to read and I love to write (and you should if you want to be a successful author). However, I have let things get in the way of this dream. Noticed what I said, "I have let things get in the way of my dream." No one has made me put my writing on hold or keeps me from sitting down to write daily, weekly, monthly, etc. No one has stopped me from sending manuscripts out to be reviewed for publication. 
Becoming a writer is hard. It's a long, lonely road. You have to be willing to learn from all those around you who write (be it a new writer or a New York Times author), hear the same things over and over again but in new or different ways, and willing to let others judge your work through their own perception and evaluate what you feel will improve your work or take away from it. You have to love reading, learning and have a curiosity about the world around you. Yet, while you're doing all this, you have to meet responsibilities and duties in your life. It is easy to let life just happen or get in the way of your dreams as the saying goes because there are just too many things you need to do in life and becoming a writer is just one of them. It is easy to get lost along the way or just give up.
I have let things or things have popped up I have let stand in my way, some of these things have been for the welfare of my children, marriage, friends and community. Others are things I have to take care of or life will take a turn down a path I do not want to travel...such as paying bills so I'm not living on the streets. This is life, however, life does not control me, I control it if I'm willing to work hard and not give up or give in.
Today, I was reminded about what makes someone successful, happy and full of life. I'm not saying you shouldn't help others or be a responsible should. However, don't let your dreams go because road blocks stand in your way. It's all about finding balance in your life. Finding a way to make your dream happen as life is short and it shouldn't be full of regret. If you truly want something then you should be able to find a way to make it happen. Your desire should be strong enough to put in the effort and hard work to see it through. Not one successful or truly happy person has ever said, "I'm full of regret." The choice is truly yours to make and no choice should be made without full consideration of the path it will put you on. 

I don't regret walking away from my former life as a fashion buyer. I don't regret moving from my home state to another. However, I will regret not seeing my writing career bloom and if that means I have to say no to things that prevent me from writing then I will. If it means I have to stay up later at night or get up earlier then I will so I can find the time to write and still be the mother, wife, lover and community member I want to be. If it means I have to admit I can't do it all then I will so I can get the help I need so I can write. The point is I'm an author and I love to write. I want to write and I will write. 

To make a dream happen you have to have more than passion. Passions is only one corner stone. You have to want it. You have to be willing to put in the effort and hard work. You also have to be determined.

"Do NOT sit there like ‘Oh I don’t feel like it today. I don’t feel like it tomorrow’. Feel like it! Do it! Force yourself." —James Patterson

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