I found an old essay of mine written in this beautiful Harlow Solid Italic font. Probably some school or church assignment. Something that was supposed to make me think about my future, my hopes, my dreams. It’s not long at all – well, not long for me, anyway. I know if I really wanted to I could say a lot. Here’s what it says:
I was born to …
Live my life like there’s today and tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow …
Fight for what’s right, and for the good of others.
Be different, be me, be somebody.
Show the truth. Guide others, light the path that they can’t remember. Complete my purpose my function, my job, my work, and my life to the fullest.
Find my purpose, myself, my path, my way, my place, my roots, my home
Find what I lost and remember what I can.
And yet, I don’t know, or do I?
Like the old Army commercial, be all that you can be, that’s what I was born to do, be all that I can be and have life to the fullest, as it is written (one of the most common and best sayings), “for you are to find life, and have life to the fullest,”, and there are other things that are written, everybody should be a disciple, everybody should give, help, do, I don’t think that the list ends, but on the other hand, there are things that I want to do, work at Mammoth for example, I’ve taken one tour, and it was alright, but there’s still so much to explore. There are places to go, things to do, people to see, and apparently not enough hours in the day. I was born to go. I think that’s it. I left from Ok, I wound up here, and I’ll go. I can’t walk slowly, I’ve got to go and get there fast. Like that one song, “I’m in a hurry to get things done, I’m rushing rushing ’til life’s no fun, all I really got to do is live and die, but I’m in a hurry and don’t know why…” Where am I going? I know that, but how do I get there, that’s the part I don’t know. I’ll find out on the way though.
Time and perspective have changed me in more ways than I can count. For one, the run-on sentences irk me. But I wonder to what degree these were things I really believed or opted to write because I was supposed to. Could I really truly know what I was born to do as a teenager?
Ten years ago, I knew that there was always tomorrow – so I put off living. I didn’t pursue the typical life experiences a young person should. Ah, the arrogance to think that I knew the “right” way for others to live and that I could light that path especially when I didn’t know what to make of my own life. I was, after all, a fledgling avoidant. Much of my time would be spent being afraid of interacting with people to any meaningful extent and hiding away from anyone, anything, and everything that threatened to interrupt my self-imposed isolation. I didn’t have as much self-confidence back then, I didn’t work, I didn’t have my license. All I had was an awesome family, a blog to write to, and a tendency to pursue spirituality. Some things just don’t change.
Suffice it to say, nothing has turned out as I thought it would. Things have really gotten interesting in the last few months. I met my first boyfriend – and this one’s definitely a keeper. I managed to finally get my license. I got a promotion to assistant manager. I’ve done an awful lot of growing up in a short amount of time. Perhaps that’s why I’m finally ready to put my childhood behind and go through boxes and boxes of my old stuff.
Back then, I knew that I wasn’t going to stay where I was. I’d always moved around and never really bothered to establish connections in a place I’d ultimately leave. I saw myself as something of a tumbleweed – not rooted to any one place. These days though, I’m not planning on going anywhere so I have a lot of learning to do about how to connect and belong to a place. That’s why I foresaw myself going from one place to another so much.
One thing that has changed – my philosophy of doing is now one of being. I used to think I had to do something or else I wasn’t good for anything. I never learned how to simply be. Now I am. You see, there’s always something to do – and you can do things until the point of exhaustion. But you can only be yourself and that’s a far trickier thing to find after spending so much time avoiding just that. I’ve discovered small delights about being me that I never gave a second thought about when I was focused on doing things to earn my keep.
I can’t say that I know what I was born to do anymore. I was born, and so I’m here – I might as well be me, after all, everyone else is taken.