Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Prompt and Plans

Describe a distinct moment when your life took a turn.

This prompt really came at a good time.  I have had this post just sitting in my drafts for a while because it makes me a little nervous.  This is a little more personal that I usually post but I read something the other day that mentioned the good in posting things you're a little afraid of.  And considering my personality from yesterday's post, this is a rather large step for me.

This life turn is a little broader, I think, it is about a span of a year or so in which my life took a turn, but there was a distinct moment when I realized it.

Also, I have apparently wrote you a novel...

See, I was a model student from kindergarten to senior year.  I did some extra-curriculars, going to class wasn't hard, and things made more since than I knew how to handle.  I floated through life easily, no thoughts to the contrary.

In college things started out this way.  Things were good, progressing.  I was on my own!  It was wonderful and liberating.  It was everything that it should be.  And then, a few years in, things changed.  My distinct moment was sitting in a class and just thinking that I could not be there.  Couldn't stand to be there one minute longer.  Didn't fit there.  I left the class in a moment of flurried confusion and from then on out it was a hard fought battle between me and school and the anxiety I felt about nothing in particular.  Everything in particular.  That was the worst part.  It was just there, rooted in nothing.  Looming.  Attached to nothing but ever present.

I wasn't doing what I was supposed to do.  Irresponsible.  I wasn't doing good in school.  Dumb.  I didn't feel like leaving the house.  Lazy.  Those words were sharp.

And here was the problem: identity crisis!  My whole life I grew up a certain way.  I grew up straight.  No hiccups.  I just didn't have any bumps along the way, ya know? I was the child who my parents expected the most out of.  Im not trying to be whatever, it's just true.  I was the book smart, overly cautious, (mostly), responsible to a fault, child.

And then I went to college.  You go out in all your innocent glory and you laugh and study and find your happy self and walk gracefully out the other side, four years later, ready to take the world on.  That's the norm and that was me.  And that wasn't plan A, that was just the plan.  Because why would you need a plan B when you have life planned out.  And it's never been hard before.

You know, when you are you for your whole life, you get tunnel vision.  

This is you.  And that isn't you.  

But you're looking in the mirror and seeing yourself, and you're sure its you, because you'd recognize that face anywhere.  

And you're feeling the feelings and seeing yourself and you crumble just a bit because its coming together, is all.

What's hard is that things didn't feel like mine anymore.  For a while, I didn't feel like mine anymore. I knew who I had been and I could see who I was becoming but the two were so foreign to each other that I wasn't sure what was left.  I didn't belong to the world of the girl I  used to be and I didn't want to explore the future with this new person.  She was a righteous failure.  She wasn't the happy go lucky girl that I knew and loved.  She couldn't even finish college in 4 years like everyone else on the planet. Which isn't true, we know.  But I spoke in absolutes for a while.  

That part of my life absolutely swam in absolutes. 



Things got better, little by little.  But not until I gave up on my stubbornness, resentment, and refusal to accept myself.  Both past and present.  It's hard to accept a different version of yourself, one you never saw coming.  But it's vital, accepting is vital.

So all this to say that Plan A, the plan that I didn't know I had, is dead and gone and may it rest in peace.

Things didn't go as planned and that was unfortunate but while I sitting there getting friendly with my negative thoughts, my life was passing me by.  Just like that!  Gone and away.  And if I let a setback dictate my whole being then who is really losing here?  It's not the people who "got it right" or God.  It's just not. And you don't really want it to.

And plan B isn't really a plan. Rather a concession to my linear thinking and my white-knuckle grasp on "the way it should be". Plan B isn't really a plan but it's a reminder to let it go.  A reminder to embrace life in it's insane, beautiful, and sometimes life changing turns. To have faith in God, even in those times when you can't see a single solitary reason for where he's put you.  For where you've found yourself.

I have since started seeing this as a growing experience.  And what a difference that has made. Who would have thought feeling strong could be a choice?  A simple mind shift.  You could choose which way you'd like to go and will it to be.  That is just amazing to me.

Some days it still bothers me.  Bothers me that things didn't go how I had planned them out.  But those thoughts don't hold near as much water as they used to.  The past doesn't hold as much.  I've learned to see the better in things and the future is far more exciting.

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  1. I completely understand where you are coming from! I'm pretty much in the same boat.

  2. thank you for this post. today, i needed to read this :)

  3. Kristen Seuberling9:08 AM, September 10, 2013

    It's hard to break free of the person you once were... I felt this exact way right after I graduated college. All of the plans I had made seemed to crumble and fall apart. However, a new dream and a new plan has formed since then, and in the end, it is absolutely worth it!

  4. I found your blog through Blogtember, and after reading this post I have to say I'm glad I did.

    This is such a beautifully written post about something I'm sure a lot of people have felt and gone through. I know I have. Not knowing who the person in the mirror is exactly, while at the same time fully recognizing your image can be seriously confusing.

    Anyway, I'm glad you decided to publish this. I needed to read this.

  5. I have such a hard time when plans change. Especially when they are life plans. I totally relate to you in that way! It takes so much to just go with the flow, and to not freak out about the fact that I don't know which way the flow is headed. God has seriously been teaching me that as well lately. Thank you for sharing! :)

  6. Vaida Tamošauskaitė2:27 PM, September 10, 2013

    wow! loved reading it, and the way you put the quotes - awesome! and in the end - well done you!
    it's really hard to get to know yourself, to find your element.. and for some people it takes ages. even the whole life.
    thanks for sharing it. as others commenting below - I also needed to read this. you inspired me, and definitely made my day. thanks for that, Dear! X

  7. This is SUCH a wonderful post. I also had a turnaround time in my early twenties when life took a different direction. For me it was a prolonged illness. While I was recuperating I made a new plan called "plan b, the plan of epic proportions." Which basically wasn't a plan at all, but a reminder to seize every moment and see the beauty in every opportunity. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Aww well I'm glad I wrote it! I just emailed you about a post I was wanting to do :)

  9. It totally is! Once you can get past it you realize it was all just paving way for something much better!

  10. Thank you so much, I really appreciate your kind words :) I'm really humbled that people find this so relatable. Also, I'm glad to have you! Thanks for taking the time to read this long thing and comment!

  11. Right! I am such a planner and when those plans fall through I tend to freak out! Thanks for stopping by and for your sweet words :)

  12. Aww, thank you so much! I definitely wrote this post because of what I was feeling but it is really nice that it is resounding with people. I'm glad I could do a little inspiring :) Thank you for your kind words, I really appreciate them!

  13. Thank you for sharing! Even though it comes about in the less desirable of ways, I think these big changes are for the better! They open up new things, or allow us the change we need in thinking to make good things happen :) I appreciate you taking the time to comment :)

  14. Then we're in it together! Thanks for stopping by :)

  15. Sarah, great post! I am happy that you are taking this time in your life to really figure what it is that you want. That you were able to realize that Plan A was not what you wanted AND that you TOOK ACTION! That takes a lot of courage!