Impulsive. Regretful. Discontented.
All adjetives that describe my greatest struggles. This is usually how it works...I decide that I want something and I do everything that I can to make it happen. Shortly thereafter, I figure out my impulsive actions were a mistake and I'm not really pleased with the results. Ultimately, I regret doing it to begin with.
This scenario has followed me throughout my growing up years and into my adult life. It's something I despise about myself but find it very difficult to change as well. One of my sisters has worked in the same place for the past 20 years and I find myself wondering how in the world she has done it. How does she put up with the politics? How does she keep her mouth shut when she sees inappropriate, unfair, unprofessional things going on in her workplace? How is it that she always appears content, if not happy, in her now?
Last spring we moved our family to the sunny state of Florida. I think we were searching...for something...
We put our four bedroom home up for sale in the Midwest and it sold for asking price in about a month. Not too bad when one considers the housing market at that time. I quickly and effortlessly found a job (with a moving bonus) very near the ocean and it seemed like everything was falling into place. I moved down before everyone else and found a house in a really nice neighborhood with really friendly neighbors. Once I started my job I realized my folly. I hated it...I despised it...I cried before I got to my car every night after my shifts.
"For I have learned in whatsoever situation I am in, therewith to be content" Phillipians 4:11. I would run this verse through my head over and over. Every morning as I walked into work I would see the palm trees outlined by the sun rising up over the water. The hospital sat right on a bay and I would ask myself "What is wrong with you"?
Of course, we would go to the beach...it was gorgeous! The sand was white and powdery (yes, we were on the Gulf Coast). I loved driving by the bays and seeing all the sailboats. The dolphins would actually come into the swimming area of our favorite beach and you could watch them from the shore.
But I did it again! I wasn't happy. I wasn't content. I started complaining. I started manipulating. I started plotting. How do I get back home? And I won. Four months later, we were back in the Midwest.
My most recent failure is beating myself up. We're now renting a nice house very near where we used to own. My kids are happy--Jared was able to go back to the same school he had started in. But I frequently think about what we gave up. Moving 1000 miles is expensive...our savings and profit from our house is gone. We still have credit card debt from our little four month excursion. And I feel stupid...I feel like a failure. I try to blame it on someone else...why couldn't I have loved my job??
Four months after we got home I left my husband. There was no infidelity. I somehow convinced myself that things would be better if I was by myself. I quickly figured out that the grass really isn't greener and that I'd messed up again. My hubby and I are back in the same house and things are going better, but it's just one more regret to add to my list. I've moved four times in 17 months and that makes me feel sorry for myself as well.
I love the Serenity Prayer. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to accept the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
Life is a work in progress. Sometimes, it can be wonderful. At times, it can kick you in the butt. We reap what we sow...but if I can learn from the mistakes that I have made then I'm becoming a better, more complete person.