Sometimes, we make bad choices. And sometimes, the choices aren’t really ours.
The “bad choice thing” can happen anywhere, anytime, really. Say you are standing in line at the grocery store. And right beside you are the endless bunkbeds of fabulous candy bars. Finally, you narrow it down to the Zagnut or the Zero.
You play it over and over in your mind, as the cashier finishes ringing up the happy grocer in front of you. Who, is probably named Madge, and she is wielding a 4-inch stack of coupons. But there goes the melody, in your mind, “Zero or Zagnut. Zero or Zagnut. Zero or Zagnut.” Finally, you grab the Zag, and that is THAT. Mind made up.
On your way home, you begin digging through the bags on the back seat floor, looking for that candy bar. The moment you unwrap it, and the smell hits your nose, you completely understand that you REALLY wanted the white-chocolate-almond-nougaty-goodness of the Zero, not the crispy-peanuty-toasted-coconutty-ness of the Zagnut Bar. But you eat it anyway.
Other times, the bad decision is something with greater weight. We say something we wish we hadn’t said. We do, or don’t do, something quite right, or within our normal character. And on.
Those are the times that are harder to bear. The times that we wish we could get back. But we can’t. We have to eat those bad decision. Like the Zag.
We can’t erase time, or turn it back at all. As much as I’d like to sometimes. Truly, the only thing we can do, is to learn. We learn from our mistakes. We make our bids in life, to do better next time. And then when that next occasion rolls around, we do what is right. We act as we should. Hopefully.
And then there are those other times, I’ve noticed. The decisions or choices that aren’t really ours, to begin with. Yesterday, I saw an article about JayLo. The headline blared, “Jennifer Lopez at 52. How she stays looking this fabulous.” The photo in the article was completely overwhelming. It was JayLo, in this ungodly yoga pose, with her head toward the ground, the rest of her body, angling upward toward the heavens. There were righteous curves everywhere, not to mention mind-boggling muscle tone, and remarkably flawless skin.
I stared at the photo for a moment, and considered reading the article, to see how she does this at our age. And then it hit me. My body, in its very prime — at the height of its workout regime — has NEVER remotely resembled this display. Not when I was in college, at the finest-line of my softball career, not when I was an avid runner in my 30s and 40s. Never. Ever. And doing whatever she is doing, is probably not going to make me look like her. Because I DON’T. It’s not even a choice, as I mentioned.
How I’d like to make that choice. To pull out that magic wand and wave it all over my Polly-Face-And-Body, transforming myself into goddess-glow. But. But. BUT. When they were dolling out the human bodies, and they asked me on the survey, “Would you rather have lightning-fast reflexes, or curvy, supple breasts?” I thought they were talking about Chicken Dinners, so I said I wanted the quick reflexes.
And truthfully. In all seriousness. I am glad I did. My body works great. It does all the things it is supposed to do. Most of the time, it does this without too much of a complaint. And I am thankful that this is the body I have.
So whether, we have a non-choice, or we make a bad choice, we can always learn. We can always grow. We can always become. The best. The best that we can be.
But. I bet JayLo don’t eat dat Zagnut Bar.
“In the end that was the choice you made, and it doesn’t matter how hard it was to make it. It matters that you did.”
― Cassandra Clare, City of Glass
“We’ve all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That’s who we really are.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
“Maturity is when you stop complaining and making excuses, and start making changes.”
― Roy T. Bennett