Trying to decide what to eat for lunch today, I resisted the temptation to reach for one of the chocolate brownies I made last night. I thought back to when I followed the Liver Cleansing Diet and how much I enjoyed having toast with honey and LSA. I don’t have toast, but I did have a stale bagel in the back of the fridge. I don’t have any LSA. But I do have linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds. So I made my own. It was yum.
Life is often like that. We make our own. Our own choices, our own lunch, our own luck. A cliched expression often quoted by one of the principals I’ve worked with is ‘the harder I work, the luckier I get’. Of course, that floated above the heads of most of the teenagers being addressed. However, it is true. There are some things over which we have absolute control. I can choose to take the time to learn to bake properly. Do you have any idea how many times I have heard the words, ‘You’re so lucky you can bake.’ I can choose to raise my kids with a healthy sense of self-respect and pride in a job well done. And no, I am not ‘lucky’ that they have matured into decent human beings. Maybe I’ve made my own luck.
I can also make my own success. Of course, I don’t have control over which books publishers choose to invest in. And I don’t have control over the housing market when it comes to selling my house. But I do have control over what I do next year. Sort of. I am applying to teach in some of the Asian countries, grunting and sweating my way out of my comfort zone as the common sense guinea pig who lives on my shoulder wiggles his indignant nose at my non-sensible approach to life. I might also apply for some HOD jobs because, if I do stay in teaching in NZ, it might as well be as the boss.
My mother always told me I was fickle, and I have grown up vacillating between trying to prove her wrong and accepting she was right. I have tried to stick to things to show I can, and given up to show her she was right. I may change my mind before the end of the year. Hell, I might change my mind before the end of the hour! But at least I am giving myself a direction. And making my own way in the world.