A few weeks back on date night I ordered a drink. I was in one of those indecisive moods and eventually just made a choice. Any choice. As soon as the waiter walked away I knew it was a bad choice. I was right. That particular gin and tonic was terrible. Ugh. I’ll just grin and bear it, I thought. So I took another sip and then another, trying to forget each nasty sip and agonizing over the next one. Why was I doing this? Just order a fucking glass of wine and keep moving, Legra. There’s nothing wrong with moving on.
I once read an article that talked about how to find your purpose. (No doubt an article in O! Magazine) Years later this is the one thing I remember: Write down a couple of ideas that might suit you and then try one. If it doesn’t suit you, cross it out, move to the next, and try a new one. Simple, yes? Well then why do we get stuck on the lousy gin and tonics?
We, at least, I, get stuck in something and feeling like I need to see it through. I do it with books and movies and food; I do it in life. I have to finish “this” because I already started it as if beginning a journey automatically means there has to be a destination. In the process of forcing it, I hate the taste and the smell. The movie annoys me. I count the pages left in the book like tick marks in a jail cell.
Typically, I’d ping pong the idea of the next one back and forth until ultimately so much time had passed that I would have drank the drink and been miserable doing so. And if every sip of that gin and tonic was a metaphor for life, it would have been that I was sitting there trying to get through it without really savoring it. I was forcing something that brought me no enjoyment. Worst of all, I was gagging on life, waiting for the next one. The difference obviously being that life can’t be ordered a next time.
So this time I moved on. The gin and tonic would go to waste – as would my money – but I wouldn’t spend a another second choking on mediocrity. I politely told the waiter that I didn’t like the drink and to please bring me a glass of white wine. With ice. Just how I like it.
That frosty little glass of wine taught me that there is nothing wrong with moving on. If something leaves a bad taste in your mouth, stop sipping that shit and order a fresh start. Because there is no next round in life and definitely no need to drink crappy gin and tonics.