Updated: Jan 4
My last article, Caring for Someone Who Lost A Loved One, I expected to be one of my most read pieces because it applies to everyone and is very important. Alas, it was my least-read article to date. My expectations were not fulfilled, which led to a moment of disappointment, until I remembered that I'm writing to help those who need it, and not for any other metric. Those who needed it found it and that makes me happy. This piece is about those expectations we set in life, how I expected my life to be with Karina, and how letting go of them is the ultimate freedom.
This time last year, in September 2021, I was reaching out to a wedding consultant in Hawaii, starting to plan our intimate wedding under a waterfall for early 2022. Immediately after the wedding, we were going to start trying for a child. Had things gone as expected, today, I would be within arms reach of being a father. I would be married. There would be packages arriving every day with baby stuff and daily discussions on how the hell we were going to be parents. The excitement of starting a family would have been palpable. That was my expectation, and I was so excited about it.
Today, my life is radically different from what I expected it to be. The universe had some different ideas about what was in store for me.
My whole life, I saw a track in front of me. Go to school, get good grades, get into college, graduate, start working, find a girl, get married, have children, and live happily ever after. That’s all I knew growing up, that’s all I thought I was supposed to do. Society told me this is how I am supposed to live my life.
There was a time when I realized this life path was not something I decided on but something I was programmed into. Thankfully, I was able to take the time to step back and reconsider if this was even something I wanted before it was too late. Did I want to get married? Did I want to have kids? Did I want to work the 9-5 job like my dad? Or were these just expectations that society had for me?
Asking these questions gave me the space to really think and feel my way into a life that I really wanted. Did I want to get married? Turns out, yes. Kids? Yes, too. The 9-5? That was a big no, which is what led me to starting my own business at 24 years old.
So, I figured out what I actually wanted, as opposed to what was expected of me, and that was a good first step. I lived my life, as best I could, on the path I set forth for myself. I built my business to create a lifestyle I wanted, I met a girl with whom I developed a deep and profound connection. When the time was right, I asked her to be my wife. She said yes.
Like most of us, I had expectations for the ways things would go. I expected to have kids and live my life with this woman, so I felt like I had plenty of time to spend with her in the future. I thought, that if I sacrifice some time now to work really hard and build my businesses, I would have more time and financial freedom in the future to spend with her and my future kids. Seemed reasonable to me at the time.
But, as the story goes, life is what happens when you are busy making plans. The universe took away my person before I was even able to marry her.
So, here I am a year later, living a life radically different than I was expecting it to be. Each day I have a choice. I can allow the broken expectations into my head and heart, and devastation follows. Or, I can be present with the flow of life and allow whatever is to come with joy and excitement.
It is through this daily decision that I learned something important. Expectations are based in fear. Fear of what might not happen the way I want it to. Fear of losing what I have been working for. Fear of never getting that again. Fear of not being able to control something that is uncontrollable.
This fear creates resistance. Aligned with expectations creates a narrow path that I can think and see, with fear holding me tight to that vibration. This puts me in resistance to all of the amazing and magical things that could occur that I am not yet able to see.
Love is the opposite of fear. Love is without expectation or resistance. Love is total presence and openness to what is. Love is letting go of what I expect to happen and living in a state of connection and lightness. Love is walking the path each day, knowing that everything I want in life may or may not come to me, but if it doesn’t, it is because something better is around the corner. Love is opening myself to unlimited potential. See my article Resistance Into Allowance for more on this.
Conventional wisdom, which I have drawn from the countless business books I’ve read over the years, has told me to set goals and design clear action steps that will lead me to meet those goals. Both in my business and in my personal life. I lived this way for years and was constantly stressed, overworked, disappointed, and only occasionally satisfied if I hit a target. That satisfaction was short-lived because then I set the next goal to reach for and continued stressing about reaching it.
Spiritual wisdom, which I have drawn from alignment with my Highest Self while my heart is in its most raw and open state, has told me the opposite. This inspiration has told me to see and feel what I want in life, create it energetically, and then stay wide open, without expectation, to how those things will enter my life. I live this way now and am much happier, and much more successful because of it. I am satisfied every day, regardless of the metrics that I used to follow, and my business is flourishing and my work is inspired because of it.
This isn’t a new concept to me intellectually. Karina lived this way and showed me time and again how she would be provided for in seemingly random ways that no one could have predicted.
A great example of this is when she decided to take her trip around the world and I was concerned about her finances. How could she afford to travel for months, with no income, and not a very big budget to work under? Well, in the weeks before the trip, the community at Riffs decided to give her a going-away present to thank her for work. This present was in the form of donations to her trip, which accumulated to thousands of dollars, enough for her to comfortably fly around the world, yet she had no idea it was coming when she planned the trip. “See I told you it would all work out!” This is one of many instances she said that to me.
Now I get it. I’ve seen it. I’ve felt it. I know it deep in my gut. It is what has allowed me to keep moving forward in my life. By living in Love, in alignment, without expectations, fully present with each day, each breath, and each relationship, life works for you in ways you can’t imagine.
For me, it turns out, Karina was never meant to be my life partner. Karina was my training partner. She taught me how to live, how to love, how to connect with my Self, how to be present with my partner, how to communicate, and how to truly enjoy life, amongst many other things. In my life, she was here to prepare me for something greater, something better, something that I can’t see yet, but I know is there.
As she always said, “when you are ready the teacher will appear, and when you are truly ready, the teacher will disappear.” That one hits hard, but is so true.
Expecting Karina to be something she was not, my lifelong partner and mother of my children, brings great pain. Seeing Karina in her Truth, as an evolved being that came to this planet to teach me, and countless others, how to live a more aligned and fulfilled life, brings great joy.
The reality is that I may never get married or have the family I want. And if that is the case, I know it is because there is something greater for me to experience in this life than that. Or, I might find someone with whom I develop an ever deeper and more profound connection, who will become the mother of my children when the time is right. I'm excited to find out which path my life takes, and in the meantime, am allowing the blessings in my life currently to be enjoyed.
Ultimately, to live without expectation is to live in unconditional Love for what is. There is no, “I’ll be happy when…” It is only now, as I have learned multiple times in this life. I forget that sometimes, but then I remember. Karina will always be there to remind me, and for that, I am very grateful.
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