Disappointment is a feeling of sadness or displeasure caused by unfulfilled expectations. Our expectations are so transient and fragile, yet, our disappointments can become gigantic monsters, gnawing away our joy. After years of frustration my mantra as a mother became "lower your expectations." It sounded like a sellout. It was counter to the voices that said "set high expectations for your family." Wanting more for my family was very different than expecting more.
Don't you appreciate the years I sacrificed my body, my brain cells, and my sanity, to be your mother? Or your daughter? Or your wife? There is a pain deep down in my gut that wants to be appreciated for what I give. Part of that pain comes from the gnawing reality that perhaps I did not give enough to deserve that appreciation. After all, sometimes I gave reluctantly, belligerently, and full of guile. Sometimes I gave to be seen as a good mother, or daughter, or wife. Something for nothing is a tempting invitation.
Perhaps I caused some of that pain in my mother's gut, or my daughter's, or my husband's. I see it in their eyes. Expectation floats through their words and their dropped gazes. I disappointed them. They had needs they expected I would fill. More open, more courageous, more selfless, more engaged, more loving………… I should be.
Sometimes I am. Sometimes they are, too. In amazement I see my Savior's expectations. He expects that I turn back to Him when I stray. He expects that I learn how hopeless my future is without Him. He sees that being open to disappointment might teach me some life lessons.
I write on Fridays with a large group who inspire me. Only five minutes and without much thought to perfection. I write, prompted by one word that sends my thoughts to the keyboard and hopefully make sense.