In the Danish/Arabic blogging-project ‘Blog-On!’ the participants every week get a common theme that we can choose to write about if we feel inspired. Last weeks theme was “Expectations”. This is my post on the subject:
“The picture of smiling children is the picture of disappointments waiting to happen”. I read those words in a book recently and sadly have to admit that a part of me can’t help but agree.
I’m the type who’s always had high expectations of myself. As a child, I remember thinking that by the time I reached 30 I would have a master’s degree from an American Ivy League university, be married to a kind, handsome and successful man and have two beautiful and intelligent children, who would always be served delicious home cooked meals. Need I mention that I would also have a thriving career in a managing position?
Guess what? I was a disappointment waiting to happen! As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I find it very hard to cope with the fact that with every year that passes and every decision I take it feels like I’m closing the door on thousands of other options. I’ve never been able to focus on the window of opportunity I do open. I know this is something I have to work on.
But how do you find the middle course? Yes, I definitely set myself up to fail from childhood with expectations like those. And of course little by little I realized that my life wasn’t going in that direction. I’m not going to wake up on my (yikes!) 30th birthday and suddenly get a depression (knock on wood) because all those things didn’t happen to me. In fact, I very consciously made decisions throughout my adulthood that took me further away from those high ambitions. But still I can’t help once in a while feeling that somewhere along the road I let myself down.
So is the answer simply to lower my expectations to myself and my life? And if so – how low should I go?