A couple of years ago, I was trying to decide whether to break up with my then boyfriend or not. I was paralyzed. I couldn’t decide. I was stuck and miserable. I just wanted to make a decision but I didn’t know what to do and I was obsessing over it. OBSESSING. I just didn’t want to make the wrong decision.
I spoke to people about it. I read books about it but there was no great enlightenment, no breakthrough, no insight. So I asked for a sign. ANY SIGN, dammit. Something that would have told me what to do.
There was no sign.
I was angry. Everyone seemed to have signs / AHA moments around me. A friend puts an offer on a house because she “saw a sign” and that convinced her this was the right property. Another decided to go with a new job offer based on a good sign she received. I seethe with anger.
A couple of weeks ago, one of my best friends was in town. She had gone through a really major event in her life a couple of years ago and had to make an important call. I asked her what made her decide the way she did?
“Was there a sign? Did you get a sign?” I ask, somewhat resentfully.
“Haha, no. I never get signs. I was praying for one but I never seem to get any.”
And I was relieved. I thought I was the only one in the world that seemed to lead a signless life.
A friend decides to get back with her ex after she asks for a sign. I ask her what the sign was. She tells me.
I was going to point out that her interpretation of the sign was tenuous. I was also going to remind her about all the other things that weren’t favouring this relationship but then I realized … she wanted to get back together with him. It wasn’t the most sensible decision but it’s what she wanted to do.
And then it dawned on me. We’re not really looking for signs, are we? We’re looking for permission to do what we want. It’s easier with permission. It’s an external validation because we don’t really trust ourselves to make the right decision. It also makes us feel better as it shifts some of the responsibility off us. It’s not signs we are looking for. It’s absolution.
That my friends, is my AHA moment right here.