This week marks my first as a single father of two kiddos. I now look out on uncharted land
I didn't expect this
Certainly a twist in the road I did not plan for
Looking back on our lives reminds us of all the great surprises littered throughout
By their very nature, unplanned for
So the choice is ours
We can crash and burn from this twist in the road
Or we can go see what's around the corner
We can question and doubt ourselves
Or we can question and challenge ourselves
We can GO through it
Or we can GROW through it
"But the work is going to be very uncomfortable!"
Yes, and so is doing nothing, giving up, and quitting on yourself
How uncomfortable is that?
The wonderful David Wood is fond of saying that being comfortable at being uncomfortable is a secret to living a Kick Ass Life
Unexpected forks in the road are always uncomfortable
We can choose to be overwhelmed
Or we can 'Ride the Surprise' and see what life offers up
Here is one of my all time favorite stories about surprising turns in the road:
Days this special didn't come around often in this small Greek village
Most of the town had gathered to honor one of it's favorites
On a day, long awaited
Going back to the beginning, Captain Antonio had fished this ocean bay his whole life
As a child, tourists paid him to dive to the bottom and bring up an oyster. $10 for a chance at a pearl straight from the Mother Ocean. The tourists didn't need to know that Antonio and his brother dumped fresh oysters into the bay every night. $10 for a 40 pound bag from the local fish market seemed like a good investment
With the money he made casting fishing nets from the shore as a teenager, Antonio bought his first boat
Well, it had the body of a boat anyway, one paddle and a hole where a sail was supposed to go
But it was his
And he sailed 'Charlotte' for 14 years. His next boat, twice as big and twice as fast, lasted him 30 more years
Antonio's boat was dwarfed by the really large fishing boats
Those many years, Captain Antonio watched the enormous ships with great admiration. He dreamed of piloting one of his own. And spent his life planning and saving for one
Today, his dream is coming true
This very moment his new ship is sailing across the bay. His friends and family are celebrating with him at his home over-looking the moonlit ocean
Cheers and laughter everywhere!
With a final phone call to the ship asking to begin the maiden voyage across the bay, Antonio gathered everyone's attention to watch the event
At once, the large crowd cheered the boat as it sailed into view.
Shouts of 'Antonio!', 'Hooray!', 'It's beautiful!' filled the air
30 seconds into the cheering a loud 'Thud' was heard over the celebration
Then two more
Sirens filled the harbor as people on the boat streamed out and into the water. Fire ignited the back of the boat as it started to fall to one side
Silence gripped Antonio's celebration as the massive boat lurched up one last time ... and sank into the darkness
After a very long moment, Antonio let out a deep breath and laughed very lightly to himself. Complete silence from everyone, until a small girl approached him
"I don't understand. You spent your whole life dreaming of that boat. All of your money and time. How can you laugh?"
"You are right, my child. All the time I had for dreaming, I spent on this. All the money I had to make a dream come true, I spent on this. Now that that dream is over,...
think of the possibilities.
Think of the possibilities."
So for all of us facing an unexpected turn in the road, let's take a deep breath together and take our first uncomfortable steps into the unknown
They say a broken bone comes back stronger than before
Now we'll find out how strong we really are