I am an optimist, almost to a fault. Maybe even actually to a fault. But it’s who I am and it’s how I think, and I like it.
I believe that good things are going to happen. I believe that this world wants good things for us. I believe in the power of believing, and so I do.
But the thing is, one way of thinking can’t explain everything. I don’t think that means optimism is wrong. I don’t think that means pessimism is wrong. I don’t think that means cat-people are wrong (except maybe they are a tiny bit) and I don’t think that means that not knowing what to think is wrong. I think we are all bound to face things in life and/or run into really cute puppies that challenge the beliefs that we hold, and that’s not just expected but it’s entirely ok.
As an optimist, I am very well set-up for Disney movies and happy endings. That’s not to suggest that optimism is childish in any way (in contrast, I think it’s incredibly brave), but it truly is a mindset that positions you to find good in badness and force smiles through sadness because something bigger is happening and it’s going to be wonderful.
However, sometimes you’re in it. Just in the absolute middle of what feels like a shit storm and it’s hard. And it sucks. And it hurts – optimists and pessimists and kitty lovers alike. And, if you are an optimist, maybe you try to tell yourself that today could be the day that’s going to change everything. The whole world can change in a single moment. Miracles happen so maybe today is yours.
But then you get home and as you lay in bed, you realize there was no miracle. Nothing feels like it really changed between now and when you woke up. Your storm feels gusty and ominous as ever, and now what? Do you just believe the same “anything can happen” mantra for tomorrow?
I say no.
Today, I started thinking about how time works. How it doesn’t stop. How it moves forward. No matter what. It might not always move at miracle-rate, but – even when it doesn’t – it’s always moving.
(Somewhere, my ninth grade physics teacher is very relieved I retained at least that much.)
I think that this whole life-thing is a very fine balance. It’s not fair to set yourself up for disappointment every day, anticipating your miracle. It’s also not fair to yourself to give up.
The in between? Don’t keep anticipating your miracle is tomorrow. Odds are that it’s probably not. But does that mean your miracle doesn’t exist? No. Is this my passive way of saying that your miracle does exist? Yes.
And, actually, I will proclaim it loud and clear, gladly: Your miracle absolutely, without a doubt, exists.
Your job is to get to it. And guess what? Time – because of how it works – is getting you there every single day. Every single moment. You’re closer to it now than you’ve ever been. You’re closer to it now than you were when you started reading this post.
Isn’t that fantastic?
And that, I think, is your narrative. Not a land of tomorrow-ever-afters, but a steadfast belief that you’re closer. Because you are. Because that is how time works.
And you are stronger for every day that you don’t get that miracle just quite yet. You are tough as nails. Get a muscle tank and drink some raw eggs already. (No. Don’t.)
At the very least, Optimists, Pessimists, Cat Nation, realize that you’re closer. Exhale. Maybe even smile.
Because that’s so freaking incredible.