I like to believe in possibilities that don’t seem like they’ll ever become realities.
Because stories have taught me that hope isn’t always wasted.
I love stories. Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve enjoyed getting caught up in different tales and plotlines. I remember reading the Christy Miller Series in high school and talking about the characters and situations as if the people in the books were my actual friends, and I was a part of their world.
I also love hearing other people’s stories—their journeys that defined them and changed them and brought them to where they are now. Just last weekend, I met a couple who shared their story with me, and I was enthralled with every word of it. I loved hearing about how the steps where she first poured out her heart to him (and was rejected) were the same steps where he later told her how he felt about her and were then also the same steps where he eventually proposed. It’s their unique story, and it’s wonderful.
I think a lot of my fascination with stories has to do with the fact that they make people who they are. You wouldn’t be the person you are today without your story. Sure, there are some chapters we may not like, but I think that’s the case with many stories out there. We can’t go back and rewrite those portions of our lives, though, which can be a bit frustrating at times. I can think of quite a few sections of my story that I would like to change, but I can’t—because then it wouldn’t be my story. It’s like trying to say Simba never should have run away after Mufasa died. Sure, it wasn’t his greatest decision, but that needed to happen for him to discover who he was and what it really meant to be king.
I went on a walk at the lake with my friend Maddie on Sunday, and we sat on the ground and caught each other up on everything going on in our lives. We’ve been friends since we were 3 years old, so we’ve been doing this whole life thing together for a pretty long time. We’ve been there through the ups and the downs. We’ve laughed together. We’ve cried together. We’ve climbed pretty much everything imaginable together. We’ve gone on numerous adventures together. We’ve turned playgrounds into our own worlds together (both as kids and as adults). We’ve torn up dance floors together. We’ve won city softball league championships together.
And through it all, we’ve shared stories together.
To be truthful, I have no idea where my story is going. I don’t know what the next chapter looks like. I can’t even tell you what’s going to happen in this chapter—I do know it’s been a frustrating one, though. But I’m trying to trust that the painful part will be worth whatever the rest of the story holds. I want to be strong enough to keep my head up (as people keep telling me to do) and still love others well when all I really want to do is eat gummy worms and raspberry Pop-Tarts while I wallow.
Because I want my story to be one that’s worth telling.
I wish we could all sit around campfires or in hammocks or on beach chairs or on park swings or on curbs or on rooftops—anywhere, really—and listen to each other’s stories more often like Maddie and I do. Then maybe we could understand one another more and not be so quick to make judgments or call names or say hurtful things. Until that happens, I think the best thing to do is to try to make your story as wonderful as possible.
After all, there’s no other story like it—so make it one you can’t wait to tell people.