When you drift off to wake up
Do you always hit the brakes?
Can you stay awhile? The last few weeks have been me struggling with an uncomfortable new normal. I am feeling a little anxious, if not entirely anxious, about what comes next after my degree is done. Accentuated by unemployment and the discomfort in that, my anxiety over the next thing is suffocating.
In other words, I have no idea what I am doing once this goal is achieved… which is only a few short months away. I am so excited to finish university and be a teacher but for the last six.5 years, that’s driven my existence. Not completely, but the biggest focus for sure. I am an all consuming person. When I make a point of committing to something it’s wholeheartedly and overwhelmingly. So to say I am scared of the fact that I have no next goal in place is a little daunting. Yes, I am hoping for a teaching job or clarity on where to move to, etc, but those concerns are based on the same same teaching dream. What’s next? Something entirely and wholly different… but what.
I want my life to be extraordinary. I feel like to have an extraordinary life I need to do extraordinary things. I’ve met someone new recently who seems to have done a lot of travelling and adventuring. Teaching English and experiencing cultures. I enjoy his stories because they are so entirely different from mine and the things I’ve done. The things he’s done… big and important things. Really though? Not only do I feel pressured to figure out what comes next, as I want it to be extraordinary. I’m labouring on the issue that it’s not even what that next thing is but is it big enough (don’t ask which scale I am measuring that on). As it is heightened with people simply asking what I am going to do when school ends, the pressure I’m feeling isn’t external at all. There is a small measure of wanting to succeed in being something great, individual, and inspired, especially in the eyes of the people who matter to me… but mostly, it’s about being present in my own life and making sure it’s exactly as it’s meant to be. I just don’t know exactly what that means.
I know it’s extremely exaggerated to say, but right now I’m feeling SO anxious that I’m afraid I am going to miss it all simply while I am trying to figure it out. I often feel as though I do have an extraordinary life but that’s largely because I have been blessed by extraordinary people, not necessarily that I myself have experienced anything all that different from average.
I’m not trying to sound like I am discouraged by my life, quite the opposite really… I am thrilled by what I’ve been blessed with and the things I’ve achieved. The only downer is that when you’ve dreamed for something for a lifetime, such as becoming a teacher (in my case), the high that comes with achieving it is something like an unrealistic addiction: something I don’t want to end so I need something else to achieve now.
Finally, I am paralyzed by the fact that I have the best people in the world in my life. Yes, the absolute best people. And the people who keep walking into it are just making it better… but witnessing their goals and/or focuses not only makes me wonder what my next one(s) is but if I can just join them on the ride of their own for awhile. Or at least, play witness to their own grand adventures so I can add to my own.
It’s like wanting to impress people or impress myself with my next ambition… but before I commit to it, that goal has to truly impress me … and thus, the pressure is mounting.
Seriously, what should I do? I can’t hold all of my desires in two hands, let alone find a tangible way of getting them. Maybe my problem isn’t wondering what next but rather, knowing where to start? ‘Cause really, it’s freeing not being tied to this one for much longer.
…let’s see colours that have never been seen; lets go to places no one else has been. (U2) among other things.