At this moment each of us is looking ahead to better days, InshaAllah. We may be dreaming about finally landing that sweet consulting job. Or getting into that amazing law school. Or getting into ANY medical school. We are focused on looking ahead at our next achievement, our next goal. In this drive forward, it becomes easy for us to lose sight of our current blessings.
It was my dream to go to UC Berkeley. I grew up rooting for Cal football (they were highly ranked at the time, believe it or not), and it was close to home. It was perfect in every way. Since nothing is guaranteed, I applied to other schools as well. Being a hotshot student (note: still need another word for hotshot), I expected to get into every school.
Around March, the letters of acceptance started rolling in. I was accepted into UC Davis, Cal Poly-SLO, UC Irvine and UC San Diego. These are all very good schools in their own right, but in my mind, nothing mattered until Berkeley replied. One night, while working hard on Facebook, I noticed some friends posting about UCLA. Admissions decisions had been made. I logged into the website, and when the page loaded half-way, I closed the window. I had seen the word “Congratulations,” so I knew I was in.
I walked into the living room and told my parents that I had been accepted into UCLA. As they started to congratulate me and give me celebratory remarks, I stopped them. I told them that the real celebration could commence when I got into UC Berkeley. That celebration never came. I was deeply regretful. What could I have done to be a better candidate? Was it my SAT subject tests? What was it?
When I thought back and reflected on that part of my life, I realized that my regret was misplaced. The admissions decision was out of my control. God had a better plan for me. Accepting this allowed me to move on and enjoy and love my time at UCLA. My reaction to God’s will, however, was under my control. I wish I could go back and enjoy my admission into UCLA. I realized there were people whose dream school was UCLA, and who did not get the same chance as I did. Yet here I was taking it all for granted.
We should enjoy the good Allah has bestowed on us. It is a great way to show appreciation to the All-Mighty. I don’t mean to say we should flaunt it and let it get to our heads. Like everything in life, there is a balance. I played high school quarterback and we had a rule.
After a big win, we enjoyed the rest of the night and the day after. Once Sunday rolled around, it was back to work. We got ready for the next opponent. I like this model. Take time to enjoy accomplishments, but then move on to the next objective. Take care and enjoy life!