Over your life you will be faced with both big and small decisions. Big decisions such as, what do I believe in, how do I view the world, what are my priorities, should I be friends with this person, where should I go to college, what should I study, what do I want to do for a career, where will I live, should I get married to this person, do I want to have a baby, or is now the right time to have a baby? And small decisions like, what do I want to eat for lunch, should I spend money on this shirt, should I pick lane 11 or 12 at the grocery store, should I study or watch a movie? Maybe you’ll be a perfectionist and maybe you won’t, but regardless, you will likely agonize over some decisions, hem and haw, test the waters, and then inevitably make “mistakes.” Some mistakes will be real and true mistakes, and some will be perceived mistakes. Once when I was living in Chicago, I was running late to class and I couldn’t decide if I should wait for one bus or walk up to a different bus stop to catch another bus on a different route. I analyzed and thought about the two choices and the potential results. Finally, after 5 minutes of waiting, I decided to walk to the next stop hoping that bus would arrive faster. Well, on my way to that stop, the original bus I had been waiting for passed me by and then I had to wait at the next stop for much longer than I would have waited for the original bus, ending up late to class. And I just felt awful, really “off” and icky inside. I was so disappointed in myself for making the “wrong” choice. I reprimanded myself for not knowing which choice was the better choice, or the “right” choice. I couldn’t shake it all day. I just felt so bad and it really made my question my judgment as a whole, I just hated being wrong. That is an extreme example of how “small” decisions can lead to a perceived “mistake.” Because WHO CARES that I took a risk and it didn’t pay off?? In the whole scheme of my life, did it really matter? No, absolutely not. But at that time, it just clouded my whole perspective. The point being, there is no need to beat yourself up when you realize you should have done something differently, should have made a different decision, or when something didn’t turn out the way you thought it would, if you chose one path over another, or you shouldn’t have said or done something that hurt someone that is important to you, etc. Look at the situation, learn from it, do what you need to do to rectify the situation, if anything, look forward and move on. It’s ok, people make mistakes. Go easy on yourself, cut yourself some slack and forgive yourself. No one is perfect. We’re all just trying to find our own place in this world.
PHOTO NOTE: A number of you have asked about my self-portrait series and what happened to it. Well, frankly, life happened. I took my last self portrait around Thanksgiving and then the craziness of the holidays and a very busy December calendar (with lots of newborn sessions!) ensued. I simply could not keep up with personal and family obligations, visiting family, holiday preparations, and my client work, let alone adding on another weekly “to-do” item. And we forget I’m actually growing a human being, trying to stay rested and not run myself into the ground, etc. 🙂 So, I cut myself some slack and put my personal project on the back burner so that I could focus on my family, serve my clients, and enjoy the holidays. I did, however, start a number of blog posts and wrote messages to my baby girl without taking self portraits and without publishing them, which is to me, the important part of this project. The self portraits were simply icing on the cake, and well, um, in my professional territory, but they were not the main focus. But, I’m back! With only 11 weeks left, I intend to publish one post every week until the baby girl joins us earth side . . . Stay tuned!