“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”― George Bernard Shaw
As we travel through life we are presented with many, what we would call milestones. These can be good or bad and often leave some sort of mark on your psyche and on your soul. Everyone will go through these moments in their life and everyone’s experience will be different. But these are mine.
Some people grow up with a life that always makes sense. They know where they want to wind up and take the appropriate steps the entire route to get there. They are the lucky ones in my opinion. And two years ago I thought that maybe, just maybe, I had figured mine out too. I had a plan, I knew where I wanted to wind up, or at least had some kind of direction that was severely lacking in previous years. At the risk of sounding over dramatic; that all changed. Just under two years ago my world was blown apart. Through the trauma of losing my best friend, and greatest support, there have also been other major changes including the loss of a relationship, settling in a town as an unknown, career changes, and social changes as well. This has been a test to try and find some kind of solid footing to stand on. Though, it’s not always so easy when you find yourself in the middle of the ocean.
Aristotle would roll over in his grave if I went so far as to say “I have figured it out! All of it! What it is to live” . Thankfully for philosophers past, I will not be making that statement today. What I can comment on, is that for a long time I figured I needed to do something to “Find myself” or to “Find my purpose”. This was always accompanied by being with other people and somewhat feeding off of their goals and ambitions. It’s a funny thing how when you are alone, how you need to actually focus on yourself. Through the last little while I decided that life was actually, in fact, not going to just open up and show me some path or purpose. This is something I am going to need to go out and create myself. This opens up so many more questions than it answers however. What you want to achieve with your life is a question that can never simply be answered by what you do 9-5, Monday to Friday. Life is too short to spend waiting around, and after all, you never know when it’s going to be your time. So I will spend this life trying to create something I would be proud of showing off. I want to travel the world and experience as many cultures as possible, I want to meet as many people as I can, I want to dip my toes in every ocean, feel the grass under my feet in every alpine clearing, I want to feel every stone in every building that our ancestors created to last an eternity. I want to drink wine while watching the sun set over the Mediterranean, and wake up in a tent beside a herd of passing gazelle. I want to read every book ever written, I wand to hear every music note ever played. What a wonderful planet we have curated! What a wonderful life that would be!
Ah, l’amour! It makes this world go ’round and people tick. Everyone on this planet has that need to love and be loved. This is not always in a romantic fashion either. This love can come from friends, family, and yes, even simple acquaintances and passers by. This past little while I have found myself becoming angry and resentful with most other human beings, regardless of my relation to them. It’s very hard to make a human connection with someone if you are constantly looking for ways to avoid them or avoid being around them due to your perceived opinion that they are up to no good or have malicious intentions. I’ve been saying for a while that I’m not the greatest fan of most people but I would like to be the first to admit that this may not necessarily be the case. It is easy to become weary of other people, especially with so much coming at us from online. We are constantly connected to our friends and family, 24/7, every day we are seeing what they are up to and what they are doing. I can see how that would be exhausting. I think I’ve just become tired. I want to hear everyone’s hopes a dreams, their fears, their ambitions, even their failures. One of the greatest things in the world is to listen to someone talk about something they are passionate about, face to face. Watching their eyes light up and watching their heart and soul swell is amazing. Don’t ever stop sharing what you are passionate about. I want to hear it all. These stories are what make us who we are.
On this matter, I’ll be brief, as this is not something that should rule over ones life. However, I do believe it changes someones life. Pretty significantly. Going through my own, I discovered that there really isn’t a standard process on how to deal with a loss in ones life. The past year has been full of the standard bouncing around between all of the various stages of grief but the emotion that I seemed to fall back on pretty consistently, was anger and depression. No matter what I seemed to do, I couldn’t sake this feeling of being angry at the world. Anger is such a toxic emotion and one that I prefer not to have. I tried for a long time to push this emotion aside with some reasoning, after all, being angry is not going to change this situation is it? Being angry isn’t going to bring you back, nor is it going to make anything about this any easier, so why waste my energy on this? Well, in trying to hard to avoid this emotion I found myself pushing this entire scenario down. Essentially, trying to live my outer life as if it never happened. Maybe, if I ignored it enough, I could just go back to how life was before. This was obviously a foolish venture and gave way depression as I figured, there is not really any point in continuing this if you weren’t there to watch me grow.
This is where we go back to Life, and Love. One thing that I have learned through this entire process is also that, well, no matter what is going on with all of this upheaval and change, is that I am still going to wake up in the morning. No matter how angry, or sad, or lonely, or anxious, or afraid I am, I… will… still… wake… up. So it is up to me to decide what my tomorrow is going to be. I can not just spend my life drowning in these awful, toxic emotions or I can get up and do what I need to do to make a life that I would be proud of sharing. That I would be proud to write about, that I would be proud to have lived when I show up at those pearly gates.