So Plan – or Don’t Plan – Accordingly

White ink on Mixed Media Paper- Words: Boris Pasternak

I opened one of my favorite quote books and looked up the word surprise. This quote from Boris Pasternak stuck out. I grabbed a bottle of white ink and filled the dropper with ink then began to wire the word surprise in big letters. There was way too much liquid on the paper which wold never dry, so I grabbed a paper towel and blotted it…hence the text true marks and bubbles on the letters. This is not at all what I thought it would look like, so it was indeed a big surprise!

Some people love a good surprise. They love being shocked, the center of attention and the idea that someone took time to plan and bring them joy. They seem to have no fear and no hesitation in saying or doing whatever they feel at the moment when they are surprised. They love a good laugh, to be scared or gifted or thrilled by whatever that someone has compiled. My husband is not one of these people.

My brother helped me complete a DIY project today while my husband was napping. I did not show my husband the result until we went to bed. I said, “Hey I need to show you something.” And he said a flat toned explicative…”what’s wrong?!” I pointed to a wall in our closet and he looked, then he said a really great word! “Wow!” It was something he knew was in process, he just didn’t know we hung it up and that it was completed. He smiled, took a closer look, and loved how it turned out. I was reminded again why he does not like surprises, he instantly thinks something is wrong. I get that…and I get that even more clearly after this.

Not everyone likes surprises. Like my husband they dread being caught off guard or having the deal with the unknown. Instead of joy, surprises bring them dread. It doesn’t mean these people are sad, depressed or wrong, they just don’t like being surprised. It takes them a while to warm up to new things and the thought of a surprise makes them break into a sweat. Knowing people means knowing which way they roll, they love surprises or they don’t. And when they tell you they don’t it is important to listen because they are telling you the truth.

Surprise is the greatest gift life can give us – babies, romance, a new job, a new friend, a discovery, an adventure, a flat tire or even getting lost. Those things are not always planned and the surprise is part of the fun. I was reminded today that not everyone reacts the same way to a surprise, so plan – or don’t plan – accordingly.

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