Everyone tends to go through different seasons in life – sometimes these seasons are incredibly difficult and other times you’ll find yourself reaping the benefits of all of your hard work. When this year began, I knew it was going to be a different one. I could tell that it was going to be a time when I was pushed outside of my comfort zone, a time full of change, where hard work and dedication were not optional, and where things may not be exactly what I had laid out in my head. Not only that, but I felt like it was going to be that way for all of my friends. Call it intuition or reading the signs, but so far that gut feeling I had seemed to be right.
I have friends from all different parts of my life (high school, college and post-college) and it seems like everyone is going through a major life change right now (and already this year). I know right, they couldn’t even get to the six month mark… had to start making moves in the first quarter! I’m talking everything you can think of — going back to grad school (x3), getting married (x5), moving to another place (x5), new addition to the family (x2), fallen in love (x2), changing jobs (x4), started a new business venture (x3), and more. These are all pretty massive shifts and so have really forced me to reflect a lot on my life in turn.
I’m … not going back to school, definitely not getting married (would have to check off the ‘falling in love’ first), not having children (see previous two first), not moving… you get the picture. And then it hit me… I’ve never been here before. Since graduating from school, I’ve always been the one with at least one major thing going on that consumed my life completely. I lived out of a suitcase and hotels for the first 2.5 years and then picked up my life and moved across the country where I didn’t know a single person. When I realized this it was an unsettling feeling at first, almost like “what’s wrong with me that everything is just so .. normal?” I’ve grown so accustomed to change lately that I forgot what it was like just to be. For a long time, the idea of just “staying put” really terrified me. To me, it can feel in some contexts like laziness or lack of motivation and drive. I’m the type of person who will pretty relentlessly devote myself to something until I figure it out and the way things go these days there’s always something that you could be doing.
This, however, is different. I’m doing everything that I can and need to be doing in my life, but life needs to figure out where it’s taking me next. There come times when you have to trust in what is happening around you and that the right doors will be opened. It’s kind of like playing a game of chess and trying to think out your next move before your opponent moves. They could throw something at you that you weren’t expecting and instead of feeling caught off guard, you’re better off just peacefully waiting and then taking your time to decide what to do with whatever they hand you. My Dad taught me how to play when I was younger and one of the things I noticed even as a little girl was that it’s a slower and more thoughtful game. You can sit there and think about your next move for as long as you want technically. Your opponent might take 10 minutes to decide to just move their pawn one space forward, or they might move their Bishop all the way across the board not realizing that it allows you to move your Queen into checkmate – either way you won’t know until they make their move. There’s much joy and peace to be found in that waiting time, however long it may be. I’m challenging myself to embrace that and replace the restlessness with faith.
So I may not be moving across the country or city again, or starting a company (yet) … but that’s ok. I’m going to keep on doing what I’m doing and know that when life makes it’s next move, I won’t be angry that it wasn’t the move I had prepared for… I’ll be sitting there with a glass of champagne and a smile on my face because it better watch out for mine.