"The more I think about things, the more I see no rhyme or reason in life. No one knows why some things work out and some things don't. Why some of us are lucky and some of us get..."
The quote featured above is from the movie Notting Hill. Now before you go off and laugh at my choice of reference, let me plead my case. That quote has been resonating in my mind for the past couple of weeks and after the events of this past Friday evening, it couldn't ring any truer.
I feel as though I'm on this ridiculous roll of bad luck... even though it's not a roll of any kind. It just... is. I always imagined - and to a certain extent believed - that we created our own luck; charted our own destiny. But I realize I'm wrong. Sometimes the way things work out really isn't up to you.
A few weeks back I was informed that a couple of positions became available at my previous place of work. A place I thought I could really thrive in. When I was there, I was told on numerous occasions that there would be no chance of me ever getting hired on full-time because of budget cuts and other issues. So I found another job at a company where I absolutely enjoy working right now.
And it's the first time in a long time that I realized there's truth in the saying, "It's all a matter of timing and good luck."
A lot of successful people will freely admit that they achieved their goals and dreams through hard work, determination, and a 'little' bit of luck. I'm realizing quickly that it's not just luck... it's a whole LOT of luck.
Then, while all this was mulling around in my mind, I spent the last week feeding my brain at this wonderful three-day conference in Toronto, where I had the chance to listen to 50 speakers from different walks of life. Including one Mr. Deepak Chopra, who reminded me about the importance of listening to my heart. And about the importance of self-reflection as well. I used to do this all the time when I was in university... but somewhere between searching for a career and figuring out how this whole 'being a grown-up business' works, I got lost. And to be honest, I feel pretty lost at the moment. I feel like I've lost balance, and I want to find my feet again.
And then, just when I thought I couldn't feel any worse about my life getting all tangled up in itself, I ended last week with my wallet being stolen on the subway.
So you can imagine that right now, all I really want to do is look up to the heavens in an open field and scream, "Is that all you've got?!"
I'm frustrated. It seems like these days no matter what I do, I'm either too early or too late. I'd like to be where I need to be on time. Just once. I'd like to be able to say, "I'm going to spend Saturday rolling in my bed, watching movies"... and actually mean it, without having to run around trying to sort out the contents of my lost wallet.
And then I force myself to look at the bigger picture. Last week a young girl in Toronto went for a drive to sort our an errand. She made a regulated turn, and ended up killing a child crossing the street. She didn't plan for that to happen. It just happened. And now her life, and the lives of the families involved, will never be the same again.
The other day a man went out to watch game 7 of the Stanely Cup finals in Vancouver. The Canucks lost, and he ended up in a post-game riot. During this time, he tried protecting a car about to be torched, and ended up getting beaten up by the rioters. I bet he didn't see that coming when he left the house earlier in the day.
So you see where I'm going with this? I'm really starting to believe there's no real formula to this whole luck thing -- it just happens. Que sera sera. What will be will be. We can only do our best, and continue to have dreams, and make attempts at having them come true. But this business of who gets the sprinkles of fairy dust, and who doesn't... that part isn't really up to us.
... How two people can be born into the same family, and achieve different financial outcomes as adults?
... Whether you'll succumb to a disease, just because the genes that blended when your parents had you, are actually warring against each other in your body?
... That out of two plants planted in the same soil, mere inches apart, one will survive, and one will fail to grow?
... That even though you may dream of your future in one way... there might be a diffirent plan for you, that's out of your control?
... That no matter how cautiously you lead your life, you too can be caught in a freak accident?
So... who decides? Definitely not us.
I'm really trying to continue with my regular optimism. But some days, because of this whole 'being human' factor, it's pretty darn difficult. I'm struggling to embrace my mother's ability to have faith in fate. I don't want to become one of those people who looks back on her life and thinks, "I really wish I had... when I could..."
I'm really trying...
And as always, even though I'm a terrible Catholic, I'm going to turn to something here that my grade eight teacher always told me to say when I felt unsettled: