31 May 2014

I Am Definitely Going Somewhere

I constantly battle with the question, “How are you ever going to get anywhere in life?” as though if I don't know what I am doing with myself that very second, I will forever be a failure. And as though just trying to be happy and healthy isn't enough.
traveling and writing feel so natural,
like they're what i am meant to be doing

Sometimes I forget that as a 22 year old, I still have time in my life for being spontaneous, irresponsible, and focused on what makes me happy. I can travel across the country and stay up all night when I have to work the next morning. I can make mistakes and try to figure out who I am and what I want to do with my life. And anyone who judges me for that clearly did not take enough time to try to figure out who they were. Or they were so lucky that they already knew everything about themselves at a young age. I, on the other hand, have no idea who I am. I have vague ideas about what I want to do with my life, but nothing concrete. All I know is that I only have one life to live and I crave and I need all kinds of different experiences in order to feel as though I am living it.

These experiences are especially important as a mentally ill, aspiring writer constantly being asked, “Do you know how hard it is to break into the media industry?” I have a vague idea, yes. I also know how hard it is just to achieve at daily life as someone on three different psychiatric meds who can barely handle a part-time job. I know how hard it is to live in a less than ideal environment where I am constantly stressed. I know how hard it is to scrounge up the money to travel when I only make $8/hour. And how hard it is to quell my fear before leaving to go somewhere new. I have the writing skills under my belt, and if I can get myself out of bed, earn some money, put myself on a plane/train across the country, and just be out in the world, I've already accomplished the hardest part. If I can do that stuff, I can do anything. Except for maybe remembering to brush my teeth every day or convincing myself to go to the post office to mail the stuff I've been procrastinating on mailing for the past two weeks (Sorry, I'll get it to you eventually!).

Lately, I wonder what it even means to 'get somewhere in life'. In 5 days, I will be going to Austin, Texas to re-attend ATX Festival where I will be around creative, like-minded people with the same interests as I have. And straight from there, I will be on my way to California to spend some time with family and with a friend who is consistently better to me than anyone else in my life has ever been. Is that not going somewhere in life? It's waking up day after day, going to the same old job, then returning home to sleep and repeat the same process in the morning that leaves me feeling as though I am not accomplishing anything. Not everyone has the dream of a steady job, a white picket fence, and 2.5 kids. (I'd be fine with a simple apartment and a dog that doesn't get airsick, tbh. And maybe a girlfriend would be nice too. I mean, someone has to remind me to brush my teeth and send out my mail.) I dream of bouncing around the world – going anywhere and everywhere, writing anything and everything, and meeting anyone and everyone (except for maybe serial killers and people who hate Pitch Perfect).

Isn't that what going somewhere in life is supposed to be about? Experiencing the things that make you feel happy and healthy – whether it be having a steady job and starting a family or catching a flight at 2AM to somewhere you've never been before? I am only on this earth for a limited amount of years. So am I getting further with my life by spending them doing the same thing every day in order to survive or by putting myself out there and hoping I die with no regrets?

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