Living a Life Uncharted
We all live a life uncharted. Whether you go through life with a mental illness or not, our lives are always changing and we are always adapting to those changes. We have no way of knowing what tomorrow holds in store, and maybe it’s better that way. The uncertainty brings a certain zest to life that would otherwise be lost.
The journey uncharted
A long road has led me to where I am today: a road full of ups and downs, twists and turns. And to be honest, I never knew where I was going. Sure, I blindly pointed in a direction and walked down a path, but I never knew what was in store for me. I never knew whether the path led to danger or fortune. And the truth is that none of us know. We all walk down different paths in life, not knowing where they are taking us. But because we don’t know what is down the path doesn’t mean we need to be afraid. Life is lived one foot in front of the other.
So on this journey, I confidently strode down the path before me. But lately, I have been less confident. I have been afraid of what lies ahead. See, I changed jobs a few months ago, something that is scary to anyone. Changing jobs is always walking into uncharted territory. And months into my new job, I’m still scared. I’m scared I won’t measure up, scared I won’t enjoy what I’m doing, scared of rejection. What makes it harder is that I’m still working to stabilize my medication. All of this, at once, causes a big, scary situation to unfold before me.
Not the destination
The old adage would tell you it is about the journey, not the destination. And I understand that. If you chase the horizon, when you get there, you are met with a new horizon. So if it is about the journey, we need to approach the journey with a full head of steam. We need to give it all we have. Sara Bareilles (who I love) says it beautifully in her song Uncharted:
I won’t go as a passenger, no
Waiting for the road to be laid
Though I may be going down,
I’m taking flame over burning out
This sends a powerful message to me. It says that I won’t be a simple bystander in this journey of life. It says that I will live life to the fullest and be myself in the process. I may not know where I’m going, but I’m giving it all I have. And right now, when I’m up against the big, scary career monster, I need this kind of reminder. I need a reminder to be strong and be firm in my conviction.
Where to from here?
So what’s next? I would be lying if I told you I knew. The truth is, I don’t, and that’s ok. I don’t know where this path will take me. I don’t know what this new career will look like in six months or a year. But I do know that I need to keep moving forward confidently. No matter what, progress is progress. If framed correctly, there is no such thing as a step backward, only another step in the direction of your future. One thing I know for certain is that my past is behind me and my future is before me. I exist in the present, in the now. So I need to plant my feet firmly on the ground, be in the now, and be ready to give this my all.
I live a life uncharted, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.