I went to a business seminar a year or so ago where the speaker said, "Where do you see yourself in five years?"
Then he said, "It's a ridiculous question. Think back five years ago, are you where you thought you would be?"
Wow, um, no. Five years before I had just had my daughter, hadn't started recruiting again, and was planning a trip to London. I wasn't even helping with my kids' charter school at that point.
15 years ago today I loaded all of my belongings in a 5x7 uhaul that I attached to the back of my nissan sentra (in retrospect not the best idea) and headed across the country to Northern Virginia (just outside of Washington, DC). I had $800 in the bank, no place to live, and no job. What I had was a great deal of drive and ambition and hope, and fortunately my mom's cousins lived there and were willing to let me stay for a few weeks while I found a place.
At the time most people thought it was crazy. Oddly enough, my parents did not think it was crazy. Maybe they were ready for me to do something different and spread my wings.
What that experience taught me was that I was capable of doing whatever is along my path in life. Could I have done something different? Sure. We all have options. It's the lessons that we learn from those options that make the difference. I had the opportunity to learn many different lessons during my years in Virginia - and I wouldn't trade those lessons for anything.
Now I don't even try to plan six months in advance. Okay, that is a lie. I am a planner! That being said, I don't wonder what life will be like in five years because I now believe in taking life as it comes and learning the lesson that comes with those experiences.
During the 7 years that I lived in Northern Virginia, I gained a strong testimony of Jesus Christ, met hundreds of people, established a career, moved 6 times, attended four different church congregations, did volunteer work for a year at the Washington, DC LDS Temple, met my husband, and had a baby boy. I will forever be grateful for the day that I got in that sentra and headed East.