Between Past And Future

I’m a poor predictor of my own behavior.

Twenty years ago I was watching Doogie Howser and predicted I would be going to Johns Hopkins University and eventually become a successful doctor. That never happened. Fifteen years ago, I was just about done with university and was watching re-runs of Ally McBeal. I considered heading to London to pursue my legal education. I predicted that I would become a highly reputable Barrister who would ultimately change the course of Pakistan’s history. That didn’t quite work out either. Now I’ve stopped watching television altogether.

That’s right.

I don’t watch Modern Family or Games of Thrones or Episodes. I’m also definitely not into CNBC (since Erin Burnett left, sigh) and I don’t religiously follow a popular sports team either. I’m weird that way. I honestly don’t know how to download and I really try to spend most of my waking life reading and thinking anyway. Plus I’m lucky that I’ve got my family around. During those really slow days, there are also enough voices in my head to keep me busy and entertained…

I’ve also stopped making any more plans for the future given my pathetic track record.

That’s unlike me. Most of my young adult life was spent making extensive predictions about my life and plans for the future. I was obsessive in that regard and my close friends can vouch on that. I saw myself on the cover of magazines and addressing world forums. I imagined I’d make billions and help cure the world of all its problems. It was not until I received a uniquely appropriate gift from my best friend that I began to change. She gave me a plain looking art piece with a quote sketched on it. I have since forgotten the writer but I will always remember the message: “We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

Today, I find myself no longer thinking or concerned about my destination as I have slowly discovered the joy of surprising myself instead. I surrendered the reins to my life once I realized that I was never in control in the first place. I’m happy to let the universe move about. I’m now living in a comfortable space that exists between the past and the future and I quite like it there. Here, it’s all about the journey and I trust the path I’m on. I know that the thorns along the way are only there to draw corrupt blood.

Three years ago, I didn’t plan or even imagine that I’d start a newsletter. But here I am. It took me time to understand what Goethe once wrote: “Wherever a man may happen to turn, whatever a man may undertake, he will always end up by returning to that path which nature has marked out for him.”

So why worry yourself?

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