Grief and loss,  Health & wellbeing,  Inspirational quotes

When you have to improvise

“Just because things hadn’t gone as I’d planned didn’t necessarily mean they’d gone wrong.” ~Ann Patchett

When I was younger, I cringed at the old adage, “Everything happens for a reason.” It seemed like a sugar-coated excuse for rotten luck or bad choices. But the more I experienced life, the more I noticed that the most challenging/stressful events — like having surgery on both of my hips — turned out to be incredible periods of growth for me. There was something valuable to learn from every episode of pain and loss I’ve endured.

Sometimes the recipes you follow in a cookbook don’t turn out well; sometimes you have to improvise. Maybe you didn’t get the job you wanted, or the promotion you’d hoped for — but you were motivated to look for something better? Maybe a romance didn’t work out, but the break-up led you to the partner you cherish today? It’s challenging when things go off course, but the outcome you didn’t plan might ultimately serve you better than you’d expected. ~CL

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Throughout my career, I've worked as a book production editor, travel magazine editor, features writer, and weekly newspaper columnist. My award-winning lifestyles features and essays have appeared in many national magazines and anthologies, including Newsweek, Reader's Digest, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest, Victoria, Better Homes & Gardens, Bella Grace, and more. My weekly Sunday "Life Lines" column ran for 14 years in The Daily Tribune (Royal Oak, MI) and won a First Place (Local Columns) award from the Michigan Press Association. My essay collection, Writing Home, includes 93 previously published columns and essays focusing on parenthood and family life.

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