November 5th: Now
I’m going to tell you about a weird little personal quirk of mine (What else is new? I hear you thinking that!): Okay…I buy myself really pretty underwear, and then I never want to wear them. I want to “save them” for…something. Some far-off day, perhaps, when my lady bits have earned the distinctive panty award. Oh, right…that’s not a thing, is it? Well, maybe it’s…no, you know what? It just doesn’t make any sense at all, no matter which way I try to rationalize it.
It is, however, a good analogy for the way I live my life lots of times. And I bet, since we have established at this point that I am not nearly as unique and eccentric as I would like to pretend, that you are guilty of the same offense- waiting and waiting and waiting for the “right time” to do all of the things you want to do most.
We like to pretend that somewhere down the road we will be better prepared, more established, more capable of pursuing our dreams. Well guess what? I’m 44. Half my life, at least, is probably behind me at this point. To be honest with you, I don’t feel anymore prepared for anything than I did ten years ago. The main difference is that I’m just a bit more cynical, my body hurts if I sit in the same position for too long, and I like naps more. Just kidding, I couldn’t possibly like naps more. I’ve always loved naps. Seriously, though- on the inside, I’m not much different.
I’m still scared to death that I’m going to mess things up. This move, for instance- I lay in bed at night and I have moments where I’m like ‘I can still just stay. My life is fine here, why am I doing this?’ and the icy feeling in the pit of my stomach is a fearsome thing. But you can’t believe everything you think when you’re alone in bed in the middle of the night. So, every day, I check in with myself- do I still want this? And the answer is always exactly the same- a resounding yes.
Because it might not work out. It might end up being less than spectacular. I might have regrets. But the thing is, those regrets will be nothing compared to the ones I will have if I don’t try. Not someday, not when the time is right, but now. Well, not right now, next summer, but you know what I mean. My life is fine the way it is, that’s true. But man, that’s not really what I want on my headstone. “Here lies Courtney. Her life was… fine.”
Unless you are actively making plans, your “goals” aren’t goals at all, they’re just wishes. And wishes are nice, but they don’t generally amount to much, do they?
Today, I want you to stop saving your good underwear. You deserve to wear the fanciest, laciest, prettiest ones right NOW. And by that, of course, I mean- stop relegating your dearest desires to an uncertain future. Right now is the perfect time to begin laying down the foundation of your dreams. Once you begin, even if it is just in the smallest way, that action has significance. Don’t wait for the perfect time, because the perfect time doesn’t exist. Just start right now, right where you are.