“I’m not mad, just disappointed.” How many times have you heard this in your life? Anger would most likely be better to deal with, since that emotion flares up and fades quickly. Disappointment is a slow burn that lingers, casting a shadow over your choice or mistake and chipping away at a relationship.
The regret of every disappointment, every weight of poor choices, sins, and mistakes seems to follow. Sometimes it’s not even about a mistake, but misplaced expectations.
A few years ago, a school friend contacted me through social media, hoping to confirm his prediction that I was now a successful, famous artist. My life direction changed a few years after we lost contact and I had to explain to him my current trajectory as an editor. He was kind but disappointed and, for a moment, I evaluated my choices and considered what my artist life would be like.
Beyond the road you selected, you may look at how your life was affected by the decisions of others and wonder if one slight change would have produced a different you, for better or worse. Those who are aware of their immense blessings might remark, “There but for the grace of God I,” while some in less fortunate circumstances think of what could have been.