Friday, February 1, 2013

When Life Doesn't Happen as We Planned

That is the perfect picture of how it was being a twin. When something bad happened to one of us, then the other cried along. My poor parents....hearing babies cry in stereo. But there was also the joy of stereo laughter too.

Lately, I've been thinking about my life and how it just hasn't happened the way I planned. When I was little, I had dreams of things that were outlandish now but so very real then. I didn't marry David Cassidy like I thought or Foster Sylvers. I didn't open a house for orphaned kids, old people and pets (although there is still time for that ;) My sis and I didn't take our love of singing on the road and become the next Christian recording artists. I didn't marry a rich man, although my J has millions of ways that he showers me with his love that makes it much better than marrying a "rich" man.

I also didn't "plan" on having experienced divorce, moving out of California, missing my twin sister, having grey hair, liking the Ducks and the Blazers instead of the Lakers and the Bruins, dying and being brought back to a place where I am finding purpose....I could go on and on but you get where I'm going, right?

I have had a problem lately of accepting things as they are and not as I had planned. I can't tell you how many times I have whispered to myself, "Its just not fair!" But, I got a wake up call when I realized that life is what happens when I stop planning and let God orchestrate it. I can turn the things that I have found to be unexpected into places of purpose.

The other day, I got lost - AGAIN! Here in Salem, Oregon, it's not difficult to do. There are one way streets and places you can't turn and even round abouts in some places. I got stuck in the wrong lane traveling on a one way street and not being able to find my way home. I went around in circles not once, not twice but three times before I found the right lane I was supposed to be in. I came home and told J, "I got lost going home." He said what has now become his signature response (think Ricky Ricardo saying, "Luuuuucyyyy!") "Baaaaaaabbbe! You got lost AGAIN????"

Then, came my response that made it all okay. "Yep, I got lost but I discovered a few things along the way that I didn't know were there. Plus, maybe I dodged an accident waiting to happen while being "lost". That's exactly how it is when the unplanned life happens. I notice things that I never would've noticed before. I discover a hidden talent that I didn't realize existed. I develop patience that I never would've had had I not become a stepmom. I enjoy being able to minister and speak more than I have ever before. In fact, I get so exhilarated at the thought of being able to speak before large audiences. When I was in elementary school, the thought made me want to run and hide in the girls bathroom. I have friends who really "get me" and not look at me with the deer in headlights look. I laugh more at embarrassing moments, than cry. (Not long ago, while wearing a skirt, my slip unexpectedly slid down to my ankles while I was walking...I casually (well, slightly casually) went into another room, pulled it up and laughed!!!! I miss seeing my daughters but cherish the times that we share when we are together. I love the church family that I am a part of. They bring out the best in me, even when I'm feeling my worst. Then, there's this thing called the blogospere where I have found friendships and laughter in far away places that I never would've known possible.

I am embracing life as it happens now and trying hard not to fall into "planning" mode. What about you? Are you planning or are you coasting through life and letting life happen? I want to hear how your life has changed from the planned to the unplanned. Please share.

17 comments:

Terra said...

These are all great examples of how you enjoy life as it is, like discovering new places when you get lost. The slip story made me smile.

Linda Myers said...

I'm a planner, but I can be very flexible. The plan is just the starting place.

I hear you about the stepmother part.

Mari said...

Hi friend! It's good to see a post from you again and I really enjoyed it! I loved reading about all the things that's didn't go as planned, but still had a positive effect on you.
I'm pretty good at seeing the positive side of things, but at the same time I'm good at lamenting over what I wanted or planned at the same time. This was good for me to read.

Mari said...

PS - I do have a positive not as I planned from today! We were supposed to have our home group over tonight, but one of the couples couldn't make it so we rescheduled. That turned out to be good, because I've worked every day this week - already put in about 50 hours and just got home at 6:15. How would I have cleaned house and baked something. Next week should be better!

Shelly said...

I love this post. So full of wisdom and truth, it is. I am learning that walking in peace in the wake of the unplanned is the foundation of something big I sense the Lord is doing in me. We'll always have those unplanned things that try to swerve us off course, but if we also have our peace, we can overcome anything.

Brian Miller said...

life is what happens while we are busy making plans...that is what they say...smiles...i like to think it organized chaos...flexiblity pushed in a direction...smiles...

Sweet Tea said...

I am a Planner, that said, I have an unmarried teenage daughter who is due in March and my Mom will soon be coming to live with us as she deals with dementia. I'm learning there are actually some things even a Planner could not even imagine, let alone plan for.

MissKris said...

I had my 'epiphany time' in 1999 and it drastically changed my outlook on life. I have strived to keep my nose in the roses ever since. One thing positive I inherited from my father is to see life with the glass half full, and I'm so very thankful for that. I try to embrace each new day for what it is...a gift. And if it's a not-so-good day? Well, a simple prayer and the Lord sees me thru. Blessings to you, Simone...I'm glad the blogosphere has brought us together.

Formerly known as Frau said...

Love this post and totally get what you are saying....my life of the last four plus years was not part of the plan...I resisted the change and missed enjoying what's around me...I'm lost most days but really have discovered a lot around me and a lot about myself. I know I'm a better person for the change but my heart some times feels differently. I know you know what I mean.

BerryMorins Bits & Tips said...

While I was reading I thought about how much my life changed when I had a car accident and a work injury.
Living with chronic pain conditions, everyday, is very overwhelming. And there have been many times I've yelled, "It's not fair"! "Why me"?!
But there has been so much good too. Like being able to work from home, home school our son, and to really get to know my husband.
Today, we enjoyed a leisurely walk and came across a butterfly. After a closer look it looked more like a moth but it's all good! I got to share it with the love of my life!

BerryMorins Bits & Tips said...

I tweeted your post with the hashtag #chronicpain. Your message definitely resonates to the chronic pain community.

Vegas Linda Lou said...

I'm a big planner, but I try to strike a balance between planning and just letting life happen, a combination of strategy and surprise. My husband does no planning whatsoever, and he does amazingly well. I do think he'd have a lot more to show for himself if he'd plan a little.

Veronica Lee said...

Life is full of surprises! Some of my plans happened and most didn't. But I've learned to surrender to the Lord and realized that the things I didn't plan are actually blessings though I couldn't see it at that time.

Missed ya, Simone!

Joanna Jenkins said...

I hear you, Simone! And sometimes it drives me crazy, but I'm getting better at "living in the moment" and enjoying what is happening around me.

I'm lost all the time in Los Angeles too-- even after living here for 25 years so I feel your pain on learning your way around Salem. Funny thing is that I got a GPS and that gets me lost sometimes too!

Hang in there my friend. Even when you are writing about "your plan" you're sounding pretty darn happy and aware how blessed you are :-)
xo jj

MrsTDJ said...

I'm a planner, but I've been just trying to survive and breathe since my husband passed away unexpectedly in June at the age of 36. Never saw myself as a widow at 35 with a 3 year old son. Ultimately, I will survive, but each moment has been difficult.

Relyn Lawson said...

Life never does happen as we plan, does it?

Jen @ A Cup Full of Faith said...

How many of us would choose the life God has given us? Isn't it amazing to think of all we'd miss out on if we were able to call all the shots? Yes, we might be able to skip the heartache, but would we appreciate what we have as much? And, I have to wonder, how many times do we mess up what God has in store for us by insisting on our own way? I wonder where my family would be now if my husband and I had not done so. Maybe we'd already be where we're trying to get to now!

Thanks for visiting me during the UBP - I am enjoying your blog!

 

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