Sometimes life makes decisions for us. Or puts people in our paths to help us take a look at ourselves and wonder, “What’s next?” Or, “How did I end up here?” Or “Why am I still here?”
It can be something as simple as a hairstyle. Take it from someone who used to be stuck with a 80s style perm into the early 90s. I rocked that Michelle Pfeiffer perm until I moved back to the states. While I could blame it on me not knowing any better because I was overseas, I’d be lying. I had a hairdresser who kept gently suggesting I tone it down some. Finally, when I moved stateside again, my next hairdresser said, “Y’all like that big hair cause y’all from New York, huh?”
I hadn’t learned yet that she meant me and only me so I said, “It’s the style.”
“Girl, that hasn’t been the style for about five years.”
I loved that lady. I was sad when I moved.
It’s not always the simple things though. Life has this nifty way of guiding us in the right direction and dropping clues. You already know how much I love the story of God and the signs He shows us. (caution: early days post link: may be triggering).
I think it’s human nature to become stagnant. At home, at work, in our writing, our relationships, and in our recoveries.
Stagnation can be dangerous. If we miss the signs, like the aforementioned story of God, we may drown. We could end up a lump on the couch with no drive and high cholesterol Just snoozing through life like my friend here. We may miss out on a promotion or forced to leave. We may lose a chance to stretch those writing muscles. Our relationships may suffer and feel stale or we end up staying when we should’ve hit the bricks. Perhaps we put our sobriety at risk.
When life forces you to look up from whatever has been distracting you – be it something as simple as lack of motivation or something as big as fear, denial, or shame – what will you be risking? What will you be losing? Or….will life place something even better for you on your path? Maybe that forced exit from your stagnant job leads you to a rewarding career! Perhaps you find the person who sweeps you off your feet when you leave your relationship after being stagnant and then becoming aware.
For me, I must keep my sobriety and faith at the forefront of my brain each and every day. I need to make sure I appreciate the family that surrounds me and have a unique understanding of how much work it takes to be an addict married to an addict. I’m grateful for my friends. I’m thankful for an understanding boss who lets me work from home in my jammies when I’m not feeling well. And of course, I’m grateful for my latest and greatest hairdresser who makes sure my greys stay covered. Because if I’m not aware of all of those things and keep them fresh and ever-changing, I may lose them. I definitely don’t want to do that. Especially my hairdresser.
Have you missed an opportunity? Have you changed something? What are you grateful for today?