this blog either makes the most sense I've ever made or the least sense anyone has ever made when writing... tbd
It took me quite some time to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. Talk to anyone that has known me the past five years, and they'll tell you I still haven't a clue.
The thing, though, is that I know. Even on the days I don't know, I know. Even on the days I feel helpless, I know. Even on the days I give up, I know. Even on the days I call everyone in my phonebook that will listen to me to talk about my life crises, I know.
I know exactly what I want to do with my life. At least, I know what I want to do now — to do next.
And I've known for a long time.
When I first found my love of writing and journalism, I was in school. At the time, I was better known as the girl that would be, without a doubt, down to go take shots before class or on a Tuesday afternoon. Need someone to go with you? Call Stasia, she's probably there already.
And why was I like that? Well, I loved to socialize, of course. Friends were my life, friends are my life, friends will always be my life.
Relating to others will always be my life.
You can imagine, however, as a college student in one of the top "booziest" cities in the US, this left little room for studies, internships — let alone trying to choose a major.
I found my love of writing, journalism, communications, and learning toward the end of my collegiate career. I wish I had a picture perfect story to tell you about the day that "I knew," but the truth is, I don't.
Many things led up. A few blogs shared here and there. Different people believing in me when I didn't even myself. Why did I start writing in the first place, you ask? I really don't remember. I don't even remember the first time I sat down to write like this, the first time I shared, the first time I started a blog — I don't remember any of it.
But I remember some things.
I remember the first time I danced around my house in joy because someone liked my writing on a Facebook post. The first time I danced in my socks at a house I was house sitting because yet another piece of writing I shared resonated with someone. The first time I was published nationally and literally thought I was going to throw up from happiness. The first time I wrote something with no intention of it going one way, only to have it bring me the realization and lesson I needed to actually save my life.
The first time I felt sick to my stomach for two days because someone made stupid comments about my new hobby.
I remember the feelings, and I will always remember the feelings. And what is so great about these feelings, is that each and every time it happens, each and every time I relate to someone, nearly five years later, the magnitude is the same.
The feeling is the same. I am back to day one. I am back to the present. I am back to that post, that paragraph, that sentence, that word, that moment alone.
The feeling is the same.
It's easy to lose our passions sometimes. It's easy to write them off as a hobby or something we're OK at and do part of the time. It's easy to push them away as a career, because "I'll never make a living doing that."
It's easy to forget our dreams. It's easy to shy away from what we want.
It's easy to suppress our authentic desires.
Life. That's why.
We grow up. We pay the bills. We compare ourselves to others.
We forget that we live on a fucking amazing planet in a ginormous universe with one million bazillion gazillion trillion possibilities, stars, lessons, galaxies — opportunities.
We simply forget.
When I first found my love for writing and journalism, I was on cloud nine. "This is it," I often thought. "I can do anything," I always said. "Next stop, [insert dream place to work here]," I always told myself.
Professors, mentors, peers — they told me I could do anything, I could be anything... and I believed it.
I wrote blogs about how amazing the universe was. I often got so overwhelmed with gratitude my heart felt like it was going to burst while I shouted a good song in my car. I pictured a beautiful future, while still only caring about my friends, the here, the now — relating to others, now.
It was a beautiful time. I was me and the world was abundant.
Things I wanted were coming my way. Why? My attitude. That's why.
But somewhere along the way I lost it.
I lost my ability to live in gratitude for every possibility, rather, I starting living, loathing every option I had, because how the eff was I supposed to choose? The world is so unfair with the freedom it's given you, isn't it?
I lost my ability to live in the moment with my friends and connect with others, rather, starting to put off plans and never let myself get too vulnerable because work had to be done at some point... work that I rarely got around to actually doing. That's such a good way to live, isn't it?
I lost my ability to believe that the world was on my side, rather, starting to think that my circumstances defined me. My circumstances, having a college education, a job, and tools to navigate my future due to a great upbringing make me so unfortunate, don't they?
I lost my ability to be grateful for all I had, rather, becoming jaded with the world. The fact that I have to pay the bills to have warm water, heat, food, and shelter is so unfair, am I right?
I lost my ability to believe that I could accomplish any of my dreams, rather, starting to, slowly but surely, erase each of them from the list. Why try for your goals when it's going to be hard for awhile and people might judge you when you can just keep doing the same things and wondering "what if," am I right?
The answer to all of these questions, in case you are wondering, is (a hard) no.
And when I started losing my ability to do all of the above, a little leach crept into my life.
A little leach, called comparison.
As I slowly let my dreams slip away from what I thought was my realistic possibility, I started to notice the people around me more and more.
What came next? Jealously, envy... and the worst, apathy.
What started as pure jealousy eventually turned to not giving a shit at all. Which then turned to not believing in myself at all. Which then turned to not trying at all. Which then turned to not caring about anything at all.
I think, the worst thing that can happen to you, is for you to stop caring. To stop caring about your life, your goals, your friends, your relationships, your mind, your body, your soul.
Because once you don't care, well, you don't care.
And when you don't care, nothing changes.
And when nothing changes, you wonder why.
Why is nothing I want ever going to happen? Why did the world do this to me? Why and how did I get here?
I'm here to tell you (me) something.
You are how you got here.
You are why nothing is ever going to happen.
Because what happens when you lose your ability to feel gratitude, confidence, faith, and presence, when you start comparing yourself to others, when your attitude is less than ideal, when you stop caring — you lose you.
You lose what you want, what you hope for — what you've always dreamed.
You become okay with the norm. You become okay with changing your mind one million times in hopes of finding the right fit. You become okay with settling. You become okay with losing your dreams. You become okay with self-destruction and insert one million other awful ways to live your life here.
You become okay with losing what is authentically you.
So often, I say I don't know what I want to do.
So often, I suppress what I want in order to fit what I think I should do, hide away, and give in to my darkest demons.
So often, I forget gratitude and the importance of being present.
So often, I do every single thing you're not supposed to do — every single thing I have just said not to do.
So often, I lose my goals amid fears and made up scenarios. I lose precious moments with friends, I lose time and energy.
I lose a lot, and so often I do.
What is my life?
Relating to others will always be my life. Writing will always be my life. Dreaming big will always be my life.
And so will gratitude. So will confidence. So will faith. So will presence.
I believe again. And I believe again because I am being honest with myself, with you, with my heart and with my soul.
Let your dreams come out. Lose them if you must, and then find them again. And when you do, don't let go, because the feeling you get when you accomplish dreams, the feeling you get when you are doing what you love... apparently it's something you just don't forget.
They say suffering stops when you stop thinking about yourself... this is the truest of thoughts. Release your inner-conflicts with what you want to do and who you want to be, and let them fly... let them live. Because letting ourselves be happy, that, that should be the least of our worries today, tomorrow, and for all of the rest.