It’s a cold and cloudy day with the dread of winter in the air. I’m staring desperately at my calendar hoping once again that my to-do list will magically disappear with little to no effort on my part. Instead though, all I can do is stare at the date and wonder if time really does pass by more quickly as we get older. It sure does feel that way lately.
Most days I feel like I went to bed at 18 and woke up quickly approaching the final year of my twenties. The time in between but a blur of college parties, that long-term relationship, and a few random moves across the planet. Those years equally as forgettable as they are memorable on most days anymore.
When I wrote about what I wanted at 18, I dreamt only of what I knew might be possible. I dreamt of the good job, the big house, the handsome husband, my blue-eyed children, and the puppy that I would ultimately name “Snoop”. The sort of things that most people want before the universe laughs in your face and tells you to try again.
Just a few years later, I graduated college with no solid plans of making that dream a reality. It seemed as though everyone around me was finding their job, their person, and was doing big things. They were doing all of this all while I was simply falling apart. My relationship was on the verge of failure, I had a mountain of college debt, and my dream of being elsewhere was ever-so present. My once blind optimism wavered and my world crumbled quickly.
That year 4 years ago was the hardest one and one that I'd erase completely if I didn't know it'd lead me here. It was the year that ultimately brought me away from the only thing I knew to what I never knew I wanted. My soul was elsewhere all along and it took just one big move to know it. To know that it was the only move. And to know that things would never be the same again because of it.
And now I'm here, doing a job I never thought I wanted, in a place I never dreamed of being. 10 years from writing that promising letter to myself, wondering how all of this happened exactly. How all of those years disappeared so quickly without having achieved any of those once solid plans. Wondering if those plans were ever really meant to be mine or if traveling saved me from a life I wasn't meant to have then, or now, or maybe ever.
I'm choosing now to live without real plans. To continue to work towards goals and dreams, but without the pressure of plans weighing on me in the process. To choose to be happy, doing whatever that means at any given moment. And to trust that whatever is ahead feels even half as good as this.
Onwards to adventures or the yard with kids and puppies. Onwards to all of it or none of the above. Where I go from here, I don't know just yet. And if my past is any indicator, I won't know until I get there.