I remember feeling like my heart sunk down into my stomach. There was a real physical pain in my chest. The pain of being overlooked, of being told I wasn't good enough. In that moment, I wasn't controlling my disappointment and anger, it was controlling me. I wondered when the feeling would ever go away.
The specifics of my situation don't even matter — we've all felt it. When you expect one thing and get another. Disappointment is one of the biggest blows life can hit us with. Why does it hurt so bad? Because it takes a shot at our pride, tearing us down when we initially thought we were going to be standing tall. It stings so bad to stand in the midst of life and suddenly realize you're going to have to adjust that amazing plan you had for yourself. That it's not going to happen the way you always wanted it to.
But maybe it will happen in the way you needed it to.
My initial reaction after I was hit with my big devastating blow was to grab my keys and drive. It has always been something that calms me down, driving into nowhere. I remember the one-lane highway basking golden sunlight, and it made me smile. Spring in Oxford, Ohio was a sight to see, the trees budding in the brightest pastels as they arched above the open highway. The spring air smelled fresh, like new beginnings.
My whole perspective turned around at that notion. A new beginning. I could make the best of it or the worst of it. We all have that option every day. We can mourn what we thought our life was going to be, or we can create something beautiful out of what we were given. I choose to create something beautiful out of my disappointment. I choose not to be beaten down by circumstances but to fight back.
When disappointment stares you in the face, let this be your option. There is a grand design for every little thing life hits us with, even if we can't possibly comprehend it in the moment. It is all just a part of the story. But the story can't be beautiful if you don't let it be.
So let it.
Make the best of the most devastating situation because that's all that life can ask of us. You might just have to suck in your pride, breathe deeply, and tell disappointment it will not have the best of you. You might just have to be a little stronger, keep your head up and face the people you're most afraid of facing. And maybe you might even have to grab your keys and drive down a one-lane road till you're in the middle of nowhere. I always seem to find my answers that way.