They drive us. They motivate us to better ourselves. They are definitely good things in my book.
But sometimes those expectations and dreams are never met let alone exceeded. You’ve then got to be content with setting lower expectations and dreaming a little smaller. Surely there’s nothing wrong with doing that, right?
Now I wouldn’t say that I had my life mapped out in front of me. But I did have certain expectations about where I’d like be by when and what I’d be doing. Let’s call them goals. Little life goals. Once we’ve reached one, set the next and keep going.
My twenties haven’t been all I’d hoped they’d be. Back in my teen years I had all sorts of allusions as to where I’d be and what I’d be doing. For years I was convinced I was going to be a doctor. Heck, not just a doctor, a surgeon. Orthopaedic surgeon. But my school deemed my intelligence unworthy of the task of medicine at university.
That hurt. Big time. But looking back, it was actually fairly easy for me to re-assess my position and just roll with it and keep going. Wasn’t as easy for those around me whose own hopes and expectations for me were dashed. But eventually they got there too. (And actually now, I’m grateful I didn’t go down the medicine route. 6 years+ of studying and then some? No thanks. So it all worked out.)
As I’m getting older (I’m not saying that I am old, just saying that I’m older than I was as a teenager, yeah?) I’m finding it a little harder to just roll with it. Mostly because all those little milestones that I set myself, feel like they’re not being met. They’re just whizzing past me. But I’m struggling to figure out what I can do to make them happen. And struggling to believe I can get some of them met.
If you asked 18-year-old Jaina where she saw herself in 10 years time I guarantee she wouldn’t say what I’m doing and where I am now. I’m not saying that necessarily in a bad way. Were the expectations of my 18-year-old self too high for my 28-year-old self? Sometimes I miss those somewhat carefree days.
This is one of those posts where I’m thinking out aloud. Making sense of the mess that’s currently in my head. Feel free to weigh in on your own hopes, expectations and dreams and whether they’ve worked out or not.