“For people who have…had curve balls thrown at them, it is easier to digest change… in other people. Change only scares the small-minded. The small-minded and me.” (Casey Affleck)
I’ll never forget the time I (literally) had a curve ball thrown at me.
My husband had installed a pitching machine and batting cage in our backyard and a friend came over to test it out. Not knowing anything about said equipment, I actually got in the cage WITH HIM to watch him bat. What I also didn’t know was that my husband had cranked the pitch speed from 30 mph to 90 mph.
The machine released the first ball and my friend tipped it…straight into my nose! I’m happy to report it didn’t hurt nearly as much as it sounds like it would, but it was successful in breaking my nose. My previously pretty decent nose was crooked and had a new bump. And then the debate began: do I fix my nose or not?
I mean, the damage to my septum was done. Straightening my nose wouldn’t fix that. And since I’m pretty much a coward when it comes to undergoing medical (and dental) procedures, I wasn’t sure I wanted to undergo a medical intervention for vanity’s sake–just to have a straight nose the rest of my life–until a friend said this: “We’re getting older. We can’t do anything about that, we can’t stop the wrinkles or gray hair, but a crooked nose is something you CAN do something about. You can fix it. So at least you won’t be looking in the mirror every day at a crooked nose AND wrinkles!” We had a good laugh over her rationale…but I did end up straightening my nose. And one year later, all aches, pain, and tenderness associated with that curve ball had gone.
And then 2009 hit. (Who knew there was a lesson for life in my broken nose?) When I got thrown a VERY UNEXPECTED curve ball as a result of my former husband’s lies, secrets and crimes, there was SO MUCH I couldn’t fix or do anything about. But I did understand the importance of fixing what I COULD fix. So I got out of bed every single day (even though I sure didn’t want to!) I pasted a smile on my face (although I wasn’t very successful at looking happy, the grief and shock were a little too fresh and huge back then.) I faced every day, and the new and terrible challenges that came daily with a curve ball like that, and eventually, like my nose, things straightened out again and the pain went away.
Call me small-minded, I mean, it’s difficult to embrace change–especially when you don’t choose it or didn’t do anything to “deserve” it. It can be scary. But you can do it. I believe you can triumph over ANY challenge. Fix what you can. And choose a life of happiness and joy. Regardless of the crooked developments, and curve balls, that may temporarily derail your peace and joy.
And don’t fear.
The unexpected life.