Everyone has that moment.
The one you wish you could go back to. The one you for which you would like a do over. There are rarely second chances. It is virtually impossible to reclaim the time, take back the words you play over and over in your head.
It wasn’t supposed to be that way. You weren’t supposed to fail. You never do. You always win them over. Your words are your charm. Your authenticity is your spark. You don’t back down. You don’t falter. You don’t get run over. But that one time, you did.
You wanted it so bad. Your dream opportunity. The phone call you’d been waiting 13 years for. All the hard work finally paid off. You were going to stride right into that office and knock their socks off.
You studied. You rehearsed. You had this.
You second guessed. You took the easy way out. You played it safe.
You put on your best, most serious and sophisticated business dress. Your go get em blazer. You took one last look at the reflection in the window.
But you didn’t press forward. You paused. But you forgot to stride. You scampered. You got scared. It was too important. It was too close to the sun you’ve been staring at. You let them eat you alive. You back tracked. You lacked conviction. You bombed.
Please tell me you had this moment? I did. Three years ago. It still eats away at me. The one that got away.
But today I got my second chance. I went back there. Sat in the same boardroom. At the same endless mahogany table. In the overbearing leather executive chairs. With the threatening sepia photos of la bourse. In front of the same judges.
This time I didn’t cower. I didn’t fluster. I didn’t fail. I smiled. I nodded. I found my authentic me and I put it all out there. I persevered. I sat taller than anyone else in the room. I survived. I’m still here, I said with my eyes. You may have broken me then, but I mended the cracks and returned stronger than before. You missed your chance. I am moving on.
There were no questions asked of me. It wasn’t my inquisition. I was just a visitor. But I was received with dignity and respect. It was never personal, it just felt that way. The only person I ever truly disappointed was myself.
I feel vindicated. I feel empowered. I feel improved. I feel free from the burden of the failure that was weighing me down. Now it’s time to get back out there. No more looking back.