Blog, Personal Growth + Wholeness

The Ambiguous Side Roads of Life

I would describe my life these days as rather ambiguous. I can’t seem to find a clear, concrete definition for this season. I wish I liked the ambiguity a little more. I bought this card earlier this year while I was visiting a friend in the States, and I have it displayed on my desk to try and convince myself of the supposed ‘deliciousness’ of this completely frustrating season of uncertainty.

Delicious Ambiguity
[Photo Credit: Quotable Cards – Gilda Radner quote]
Even though I have gone over my priority list a million times already, showing me why I have chosen to do what I’m now doing (living and working in my childhood hometown), it doesn’t make the ‘living-it-out’ part any easier. Not knowing how long I’ll be here and why I’m truly here is a tad torturous for this organizer-planner gal.

Most of the time, this ‘delicious ambiguity’  feels more like ‘distasteful yuckiness’, if I’m completely honest.

Life is about not knowing.

That involves trusting an unseen divine hand upon my life, a trust that I resist with everything in my being. A trust that involves all the unknowns and uncertainties that live just around the corner. I can’t see that far. I hate corners. They’re killin’ me.

Life is about having to change.

I used to think that I was fairly ‘okay’ with change. But these changes over the past couple years? Nope. I’ve kicked, screamed and stuck my head in the sand like a ridiculous ostrich trying to avoid the inevitable, refusing to accept that I have to change my way of thinking, my perspective on my life, and my approach to challenging people and circumstances. I’ve fought the reality that change is often counter-intuitive, goes against the grain of my natural flow, and seems to stubbornly violate everything my heart holds dear. I have had my share of grown-up temper tantrums, crying about how life is not going the way I thought it should. My life is not going according to plan! The plot has jumped off the grid, and I’m faltering. Reality is setting in that life is rarely easy or fair and not always enjoyable. Sometimes, it’s just damn hard. So, in those times, to get fresh hope and joy to navigate forward in life, we must change. It’s the only way to progress in life. If we refuse to accept the changes, we’ll get stuck on the road and life will pass us by. Ugh, I don’t want life to pass me by…

Life is about taking the moment and making the best of it.

So the ingredients in my current life don’t feel like they will combine together to form anything remotely delicious or tasty, but this is what I’ve been given to work with in this season of my life. Can I accept it and then make the best of it? Sigh. I’m trying…

Life is about not knowing what’s going to happen next.

So, I guess this means I must give up control of the plot, and give up my demand that life tell me what’s around the corner. I must give up my wishful thinking that everything in life will be ‘easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy’ as my little niece loves to cutely declare. No, life is definitely not easy-peasy, and nothing about it is certain or unchanging. Life is more about giving up the illusion that it never changes and accepting the inevitable uncertainty of it all.

So, here I am, staring at this little card on my desk. It tells me that life is a story that doesn’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. At first, it breaks my heart, but the more I have thought about it these days (and the reason I have even kept it on my desk) the more I realize how much hope it has given me. It has shown me that even though the story called “My Life” feels so ambiguous at times, when I take the courageous steps to “change the things I can change” and “accept the things I cannot change”, I discover that the plot really is moving forward. This is all going somewhere. And maybe, just maybe, I can catch a whiff of something possibly delicious coming around the corner. And, as this other card below has encouraged me lately,

“Sometimes your journey will take you off of your path. It’s all part of the same trip.”

Side Roads
[Photo Credit:]
Life is full of side roads. Side roads that often don’t make any sense at all. Life is not one straight path forward. It is a woven tapestry of multi-layered paths, unexpected intersections, devastating detours, challenging roadblocks, fascinating views and surprising encounters along the way.

This is the delicious, ambiguous life!