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Saturday, April 22, 2006

Plans

"We make plans for big times/Get bogged down, distracted"

-Bloc Party, "Plans"

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I often hear the line (or a variation of it), "Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think things would turn out the way they did." Thinking about the experiences I've had in the last ten years, there is very little that I thought would happen or expected to happen. So I wonder: why do we expect life to go accordingly to our plans?

A relatively new idea that I embrace everyday is there's very little I can control in my life. I can steer a lot of things, but I'm not in full control. I don't mean this in a defeatist kind of way, but matters rarely happen the way I thought they would. Regardless of what I think will or will not happen, the feeling is much different after the fact than before it. Again, what's the purpose of expecting life to curtail to our dreams?

I have a theory about what we hope will happen versus what actually happens: they are rarely congruent. These days, instead of being angry about the results, I have an easier time comparing notes. Of course I can't help but feel let down when matters don't pan out in my favor, but that's a part of life. We don't get everything we want when we want it. What's really cool about life is when we experience something that we never thought would happen to us.

I'm thankful for all the things that have come my way. One of the most important is the friends that I've made. All the people I've known as a friend have been easy and natural in getting to know and keeping in touch with. There are plenty of former friends friends that I've lost touch with, but I no longer take the blame or blame the person as for why we don't talk anymore. Some friendships last a lifetime and some only last a few years.

I can't forecast surprises hence why they're called surprises. For example, while walking Juliet this morning, did I foresee her kicking a bunch of dirt on me as I cleaned up her "business"? Nope. Did I flip out when she did? Nope. Before I took her outside, I foresaw us walking for a little over twenty minutes down our street with many pitstops. That was the extent of what I saw, yet this kind of "surprise" made matters rather fun. I didn't enjoy walking down the street with all this dirt on my arm, but I took heart in the fact that I would be able to wash it all off when we got back home.

I have goals and expectations, but I'm firmly aware that they may or may not be met. I've heard that one's serenity is proportional to one's expectations and I agree. I could sit around and be very pessimistic about my future, but I don't get any life out of doing that anymore. What's that line, life is what happens while we're making plans? Well, anything could happen, so thinking about what may or may not happen is a matter of passing the time.

To be honest, I become very annoyed when I'm around people that constantly complain about how life has handed them lemons. Nevermind the thought of making lemonade, these people act all stunned that lemons have been thrown their way. We all know life isn't fair, so why do people act like it is?

I don't look forward to setbacks, obstacles and detours, but on the road of life, have some good alternate routes in mind. I enjoy when matters work out organically and without much conflict, but that doesn't always happen.

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