It’s been a maelstrom of preparing for change these past few weeks. Lots of waiting hopefully (and sometimes patiently), putting in notices for quitting the apartment and job, packing up all the stuff I’ve accumulated over the past 8 years in California. And tonight I find myself unable to fall asleep when I should have been in dreamland hours ago.
It’s all about to happen.
All this preparation and anticipation reminds me of my first big solo move to California. I was freshly graduated from high-school, admittedly naive about the ways of the world, but absolutely bursting with excitement and wonder for the adventure ahead. That same feeling of excitement is creeping in at the edges of my mind. It’s also mixed with a decent amount of anxiety, to be completely honest. But what big move/change doesn’t have a healthy dose? It’s that butterflies-in-your-stomach-threatening-to-break-free sort of feeling, and it’s ultimately good…I mean facing the unknown, following your dreams – these are part of what life is for!
I like the idea that my existence is somewhat nomadic, that I haven’t yet let roots grow long enough to keep me planted in one place forever. I don’t know where I’m going to be 5 years from now or 10, but I’m more comfortable with that than I was in the past. There is literally a world of possibility. This year I will be an English teacher in South Korea. And next year? Well, I have a whole year to think about it and decide.
At the end of the last couple years, my job asked us to complete a self-assessment survey that ended with two questions: “What are your short-term goals?” and “What are your long-term goals?”. I always felt this intense pressure to have something complete and measurably achievable to write in the little boxes. You know that feeling of ‘Well if I am x-age I should be at x-stage in life’? That idea is fading more and more, and my goals have become more abstract: live fully, experience, learn, grow, be kinder. My farther reaching goals are perhaps more measurable – find a career I can be happy and passionate about, see the world, realize my dreams, maybe start a family someday.. Hmm but those are still more abstract ideas overall, I guess.
I’m in this state of metamorphosis, as I’m sure most people in their 20’s are. I hesitate to use the word ‘lost’ as many of my peers do when describing their 20’s. I don’t necessarily believe this decade is all about being lost (though I have been there) – it’s more focused on the finding aspect…that courageous journey to find oneself and become a better, fuller person through encountering endless lessons and fallbacks head-on. And hey, occasionally utterly failing – which is ok. In the journey of figuring out ourselves, we are all works that are constantly under construction.
Preparing for a big move like this one is always a little scary…but that good kind of scary where you know your life is about to change. There’s just a little more waiting and a little more paperwork left to go.