In a movie that came out not too long ago, a 40-something woman reads a storybook to her friend’s daughter. As they approach the last page, she read, “‘… and Cinderella and the prince lived happily ever after.'” She closes the book and looks at the young girl, adding, “You know, things don’t always happen like this in real life. I just think you should know that now.”
We were all raised on fairy tales with glass slippers, valiant princes and (best of all) magic! It didn’t take too long to realize that stories like that aren’t necessarily true. After a few misfortunes, you learned that glass slippers are really uncomfortable, no prince is perfect and magic doesn’t always work when you need it to.
So what do you do when the way you planned things is not the way they turned out?
Know that parts of your fairy tale have already been written, and sadly, there’s not a whole lot you can do about those first few chapters. You didn’t get the best start. Your trust was unexpectedly betrayed. You didn’t get the job. Whatever falls and failures that happened in your past are just that… in your past. There’s still more to the story.
While your life has a lot of contributors, you are the editor-in-chief. You take what’s there and create the masterpiece. All the good pages and the bad can come together to make a beautiful adventure.
When you find yourself wishing your life was more like the fairy tales, remember that in some ways it already is. There will be dragons, wicked witches, great romances, winding roads and friends to help you along the way. So, keep rewriting your story every day that you’re alive. Whether it’s a comedy, tragedy or a little of both, the pen is in your hand. How it all ends is up to you.