You and I make plans, set goals, and dream dreams. Ultimately, though, we don’t know for certain what will happen to us one minute from now. That fact can be exciting or scary.
I’m excited about going to China soon. I look forward to meeting people, touring, experiencing an Asian culture for the first time, and my rookie attempts at speaking Chinese, hoping I don’t call someone a “horse” when I meant to say “mother.” Most of my friends and family share my excitement, although my Dad will worry himself sick until I’m home, imagining I’m going to do something stupid like challenge a tank in Tiananmen Square.
Other future uncertainties are less exciting – even scary.
For example, last year I had several days over a two-week period when I forgot where I parked my car in the parking garage at work. I knew what level it was on, but otherwise I was clueless. Was I distracted with too much on my mind, or (this was the scary thought) was there something going on physically or mentally that was a cause for concern? I decided to manage that problem by always parking within 2-3 spaces of the walkway that goes through the middle of the garage, making finding the car much easier.
Today I could not remember whether I had completed my registration for a race on May 19. The email I kept as a reminder was still in my inbox. When I went to the site to register, the code I needed to use had already been used, so I dug through filed emails and realized I completed the process earlier this week. Why did I forget that?
We all forget things from time to time, but I could not help but wonder about what the future holds for me in ways over which I have no control such as health matters common to aging. How will I handle them?
We should enjoy planned ventures into the unknown to broaden our horizons and experience life. We should also acknowledge scarier unknowns thrust upon us by life’s circumstances. Journeys are best when traveled with others.
Leap year lesson #104 is Embark on the unknown with others and with confidence.