Tuesday, July 17

Had I Not Attempted

Ever since I abruptly left Ukraine, I've been writing in a five year journal called The Happiness Project (author Gretchen Rubin). It's blessed me in a way nothing else could. This little blue and yellow book, purchased at Barnes and Noble for some price that I no longer remember, has forced me to look over each day and find a silver lining, no matter how dark the cloud of my day may be. Some days, the cloud is black as night, and it takes me quite a while to find the shy silver ring around its edges; other days however, the entire cloud is a bright and gleaming sterling silver, and it's hard to pick what to write in the space that is only large enough for one sentence. At the top of each page is an inspirational quote- about happiness, passions, and anything else cheerful they could think of- because they needed 365 quotes, which I'm sure was a daunting task when they first set out. July 25 (I'm skipping ahead on my quotes, I know) has this quote:

"On the whole, though I never arrived at the perfection I had been so ambitious of obtaining, but fell far short of it, yet as I was, by the endeavor, a better and a happier man than I otherwise should have been had I not attempted it." -Benjamin Franklin

This quote describes my past year perfectly. My GPA is not what I want it to be. I am not the size I want to be. I am not as outgoing as I want to be. I am not employed like I want to be. I'm not even in the country that I planned to be in. I strove for so much more than I accomplished. But in the process of not acomplishing these things that were once so important to me, I've acomplished so much more. I may only have a 3.4, but I have some amazing memories and friends that I would have never met had I sat in my room and studied. I may not be stick thin, but I've learned to love who I am, reguardless of what other people say I should be. I may not be outgoing, but if I was, I probably would be too loud to hear the smaller voices that have now impacted my life so much. I may not have an awesome job, but have a ton of time to reflect on my past year and learn from my mistakes and realize which ones were good ones to make. I may not be in Ukraine, but because I'm here in the US I've had the chance to bond with people I once felt estranged from, touch lives that I would have never encountered, and in turn, be touched by those same people.

I am a happier woman, having tried and failed, than having not attempted these things at all.