Marilyn and Bill were on the trip of a lifetime. After working hard and struggling for 40 years, now they were in Costa Rica, finally able to travel and enjoy life. Marilyn felt as if she had come to the end of a long and dark tunnel.
She had been an accountant for an auditing firm, and she remembered all the late nights, the exhausting work weekends, and the times she missed her daughter’s school events so she could meet a deadline. She had sacrificed a lot for that job.
Now, looking back, she realized she never wanted that career. She took the first job she could find after college, and then just stayed there. She kept promising herself that she would look for a new line of work, but somehow never found the time.
“Forty years,” she thought. “How did I let myself do that for so long?”
When she was young, she knew life was going to be great. She would help sick people in Africa, and write the great American novel. Her life would matter. Now, after forty years, she felt sad and angry. She never made it to Africa, never wrote anything more than an email, and her relationships withered while her 401k grew.
“Honey, look at that monkey,” her husband said with a grin, squeezing her hand.
Startled out of her memories, she looked up and smiled. A fuzzy-faced creature peered at her from the side of the road, eating a date. Elizabeth took a deep breath, squeezed Bill’s hand in return, and resolved to dedicate the rest of her life to pursuing her passions and focusing on the people that mattered the most to her.
She still had a lot of life to live. She would be happy no matter what. She could still achieve her lifelong goals, and even add a few new ones to the list. It was time to start dreaming again.
How about you? Have you been chasing a paycheck and doing what you’re told at the expense of your relationships, passions and life-long dreams?
Are you willing to leave the tunnel and step into the light of your life?