Some people are what are called natural talents. Most of us? Not so much.
As children, it doesn't bother most of us. We're not supposed to be good at anything because we're still new to the world. As adults, though, the things we fail at irk us. One little failure, and we chuck whatever we're doing out the window. Because we're obviously not good at it. Because it's just too hard. Because we have no talent. Even when it's something we've never done before. Isn't that silly?
Let me tell you about something I fail at every single day. Staying positive. I stink at it. I wasn't born positive - or maybe I was, but life knocked it out of me. There are a lot of scowly pictures of my childhood. My mom says I had to develop a prickly exterior to cope with all the yucky stuff I had to deal with as a toddler and then a kid and as a teenager, too. So I grew the prickles, then I tended them, and they rose up around me and engulfed me.
Today, I have a lot less to be prickly about and fewer worries. Fewer worries than I had as a child, isn't that sad? But also a blessing! Unfortunately, my ability to stay positive has not evolved along with the rest of my life. So I work at staying positive, every day. And most days, I do it badly.
Without realizing it, I'll suddenly find I'm berating myself for not amounting to anything by age 32. I'll say something mean in my head about the driver ahead of me who didn't signal. I'll roll my eyes when the P. is having a bad few hours. I'll snipe at the BabbyDaddy for something relatively inconsequential that feels, in the moment, like a big deal. I'll look at myself in the mirror and just dwell on how fat and ugly and gross the body looking back at me is. The usual babble of a mind not at peace.
But I'm working at staying positive. Especially now when I'm extra inclined to be pessimistic. I'm doing it badly, I'll freely admit, but it's worth it all the same. Maybe someday I will be better at it. Maybe sometime, positivity will become my natural state. Maybe it will always be my challenge to overcome.
I don't know what the future will bring, so I'll smile in the here and now.