I was running all over the city looking for the perfect shoe to match my emerald green dress. My best friend and I were having Girls Night that night and we wanted to show up and show out. I walked into one store in the mall, and saw these beautiful pair of nude heels. They were perfectly pointed at the top, patented leather, sophisticated and surprisingly, decently priced. Not only that, but it was the very last size they had in the store. When I tried them on, I knew they were perfect….but as I took a final look at them on my way to the register, I stopped for a second. I grabbed one of the shoes and inspected it top to bottom and thought to myself “What if I find something better though?”. I stood there for a little while longer and decided to put the shoe back on the shelf.
I left the store and went all over town in hopes of finding a new shoe that was better than the one I tried on…but nothing quite matched up. Some were too big, some were too small… either they weren’t the right color or they just weren’t dressy enough for the occasion. To make a long story short, I didn’t find anything better. After spending hours in shoe stores and waddling away a quarter tank of gas, I headed back to that store in the mall to purchase that perfectly pointed, sophisticated, patented leather shoe that I fell in love with earlier that morning. However, when I walked back to the shoe section to retrieve the shoe, it was no longer there. The store clerk told me she wasn’t sure if I was going to come back and that she had just sold it an hour ago. I looked at her, sighed, did a final look at the other shoes and quietly left with a heap of disappointment over my face. The hardest part was not accepting the fact that the shoe had been sold, but rather coming to terms with the fact that the opportunity to own the pair of shoes was right there in my hand and I let it get away. And before I could realize it, the opportunity was gone… just like that.
I may be young, but in my time here on earth, I’ve grown to learn that the simplest experiences help teach us some of the life’s biggest lessons. Sometimes, we have golden opportunities placed right in the palms of our hands but for some reason, we carelessly let them go. Sometimes, it’s because of the fear we plant in our heads that we’re missing out on something better, sometimes we’re scared to explore something new and unfamiliar, and sometimes it’s simply just the fear of failure. But we are only given one life, and in that one life we must seize every opportunity that we are given. When we recognize that we have something great it’s important that we take advantage of our chance to seize it, and blossom it into something amazing. Your “opportunity” may not come in the form of shoes. It may be a job opportunity that you’re having doubts about, it may be a significant other that you’re taking for granted, or maybe there’s something in your life that you’ve always wanted to do and the time has finally come to pursue it. Don’t wait to seize your chance to only be regretful in the end. Make every moment that you have to do something great count. Because at the end of the day, the old saying still stands: “If you don’t use it, you lose it.”
I intend to use opportunity I am given from this moment forward. And I hope that despite the doubts you may have, that you’ll do the same.