The sequence of events seemed too interconnected to be deemed arbitrary:
My friend and I were feeling increasingly hopeless and stuck in the quagmire that is the shidduch scene. We embarked on a trip to Eretz Yisrael in the hope of coming back rejuvenated and of replenishing the rapidly depleting storehouse of chizuk and prayers.
While on the trip, we experienced unmistakable Hashgacha Pratis time and again. Without going into detail, we truly felt Hashem’s guiding Hand during the entire trip.
We came home feeling more optimistic than we had in a long time.
And that’s when the ball began rolling…
Two weeks later, my friend started dating the guy she got engaged to.
At her vort, a relative of a very sought-after guy I’d been wanting to date for a long time saw me and convinced him that I’m worth a date.
At the same time, not knowing that anything was cooking, I took upon myself something very difficult for me, without making any bargains with Hashem.
An hour later, the guy said yes.
There’s something so incredible about feeling like you actually get to see the other side of the tapestry once in a while. When you feel like things are finally coming together.
I thought I was there….
But I wasn’t. Hashem had other plans for me. We dated but we did not get engaged. Though I thought that being engaged at my aforementioned friend’s wedding would be the beautiful, fairy-tale end to the story, the plot took a different twist.
And yet, I’m grateful. Because each time something like this happens, it further ingrains in me the importance of living life without expectations.
For years, I’d had this notion that life is somewhat like a math formula. You punch in the numbers and the results will always be the same. And then a new knowledge started seeping into my brain, like thick syrup through a sieve: I learned (not without a good deal of frustration) that sometimes you punch in the numbers, and the results are far from what you expected. That no matter how many times you try and try to imitate what others have done or to do what others tell you to do, when all's said and done, you have absolutely no control over the end results.
And the only thing that keeps me going through the disappointments that life inevitably brings is the core knowledge that the end results will always be good, even if they don’t appear magical. Even if it doesn’t seem good now. Even if I never get to see how it was ultimately good.
Because Hashem is good and therefore whatever He has chosen as my lot in life, is good. And that’s an equation that will never change.