In an ideal world, we would all feel free to pursue our dreams and passions without anyone or anything getting in our way. We would all be able to support each other, without petty jealousies or competitive instincts edging in on our relationships. We could find what we are looking for and not feel guilty, or worried about what others might think, or hampered by our own low confidence or inabilities.
Sadly, we don't live in this kind of utopia. But I like to squint, far into the distant horizon, and imagine I can see it. A place where my fears and brokenness don't stop someone else from pursuing their highest self. Where I can encourage anyone, for any reason, with absolute integrity and not feel like I am losing something of myself in the process. And where this kind of support and love comes back to me.
I don't know if there is any real chance of living this way in my lifetime, but I'm going to put it in front of me as a goal to aspire toward. I like to think that as I get healthier within myself, and more confident in my own abilities, I might be able to practice being happy for others when they pursue what they want in this lifetime. We all have different goals, abilities and interests. It shouldn't take anything from me to see someone else succeed, and would in fact make the world a better place.
There are just so many things that get in our own way. Sometimes the other person's goals are too similar to ours, and natural competition ensues. Other times, we worry that we are not as successful as someone else, and we don't want to be left behind, and so we withdraw our support or talk negatively to others so we feel better about ourselves. I'm tired of being insecure and measuring myself by the achievements of others. No one wins in these comparisons.
I want to be honest about my feelings, but move toward the idea that everyone has a niche and a place they can carve out for themselves. Someone else's success or failure does not have to change what I am doing in this life. I teach my kids to get along with others, to the best of their ability, and to rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn. It seems to be human nature to find the mourning easier than the rejoicing, but both are equally important. There is enough room for us all to find what we are looking for, and to encourage each other along the way.