Timelines and Expectations

I thought I’d be married by now and having kids within the next couple of years. Am I close to that… Maybe? Many people set these timelines in their lives and most of the time it doesn’t work out. I’m not married nor am I planning to have kids anytime soon, but I do have a serious boyfriend and we are moving at our own pace. I’ve come to the conclusion that it is normal to have expectations and timelines, but you also have to be okay when those aren’t met.

I’ve spent most of my life setting goals and timelines. When will I graduate- 4 years? When will I move out and have my own place- by 24? When will I get married and have kids- married at 25, kids at 27? These goals are helpful in many ways but could potentially be hurtful. Most of the time the expectations people set for themselves aren’t realistic. In reality, college took more time than I thought, I’m still living at home at 26, and I’m not married or anywhere near having kids. I am okay will all of these things because I am exactly where I need to be at this point in my life. I’m glad college took more time because I met some awesome people the last year. I’m still living at home to save money for my future while fixing up a van to travel the US in. I’m not married or have kids because I’m still working on my life and am truly not financially ready to support another human. Your life could change in a second and you have to be prepared to change your course of action.

Recently, we started working on the roof of our van. We had put a plan into place of how we were going to remove the roof and put hinges to make the roof rise and lower. We took all the screws out and realized the roof had 3 layers instead of what we thought was only 1. It had a layer of roof, then a layer of welded metal beams to make it stronger, and another layer of roof. When we found this out, I was completely defeated not knowing how we were going to move forward or if it was going to work at all. Ryan stared at it for a while before discussing some ideas of how to move forward. Ryan would have to cut the welded beams and take the other layer of roof off. Although the metal beams will make raising and lowering the roof way heavier and it will take a lot longer, we can still make it work. Although I was upset that the outcome wasn’t what I was expected, I had to change my course of action and figure out a different path. Morale of the story: things almost never work out as you expect them to, so pick your head up and go with the flow.

Sadly, when peoples expectations aren’t met, they get disappointed and defeated. I’ve come to realize that the world has its own sense of time and things will happen when they are supposed to. Learn to give yourself a break and look at how much you have accomplished already in this lifetime. If you truly want something, you will make it happen no matter how long it takes.

Big dreams shouldn’t have expiration dates. As long as you’re working toward the things you hope to accomplish, it shouldn’t matter if it takes you a month or a decade.

Rachel Hollis

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