Optimism is hard to manage sometimes. I always take risks with optimism that they will improve my future, and for the last six years, they have not panned out. I can’t be specific with the particulars, but let’s say I have put myself forward for a lot of opportunities only to not be chosen.
I’m working on not feeling sorry for myself and seeing this latest failure as room for other opportunities. The people around me with more faith in God would say that God is waiting for the right moment to open up new opportunities. I don’t think God is that hands-on, given how many people in the world there are. I don’t think God reserves this for His (and I deliberately use “his” here) True Believers. And I don’t think a God would hold me back from some of the most excellent opportunities I did not succeed in. So I have to believe that if there are new opportunities that will actually become fruitful, I have not seen them yet. I have to believe in “yet”.
Or maybe I am taking the wrong opportunities. I have been trying the last six (at least) years to re-invent myself. Ever since I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and put on medication, I have changed as a person — no elation, no depression, no excitement unless I have a compelling goal, less enthusiastic, more introverted, less charming. I have felt too rooted and unfulfilled in my life, especially 5 years from retirement, and at the same time not manic enough to chuck everything away and move to Thailand.
If I don’t try, I will never get where I want. But I hate trying for something when so much of it is out of my control. And reinventing myself requires the outside world. All I can do, though, is be optimistic. God, if you’re listening, point me toward the right opportunity.