Gonna get a little personal today. Skip now (and happy weekend to you!), or keep reading.
TRUTH: I don't know what I'm doing. I'm almost 24, and there are so many possibilities and opportunities at my fingertips that it's crazy. It's easy to feel lost or confused. I've worked at several different places in the last year and haven't quite found my "fit" yet. As a creative, I desire an outlet for my skill set, and I've found that here in the blog and in freelance projects I take on. It's nerve-wracking to think that I don't know what I could be doing a year from now, or even 6 months from now. I don't know what I'm doing, or where I'm going, and I know I'm still in a time of searching.
I've spent a good portion of the last year feeling anxious whenever someone asked me what I do ("well, I work at an agency making coupons and things, but I also do freelance design; oh, and I have a blog"). I've felt like I needed something more concrete to answer with. I've felt anxiety at work ("Are they going to extend my contracting position? Chris & I need benefits! Am I doing what I'm supposed to be doing? No one else here believes what I do... I'm not a very good example of a Christian..."). I planned a wedding; anyone who's gotten married knows that comes with it's own set of anxieties (but mostly anxious excitement). It's been completely terrifying, but also means I have so much freedom.
Our generation was raised with the idea that "I can be whoever I want to be when I grow up." This is great, and awful, depending on your circumstances or how you look at it. It's great that I don't know where I could be in a year, and it's great that I can pick something I want to try. But what is also great about being almost 24 is it means I can also FAIL at it.
That's right. It's OK. The best way to learn something is to try it, and if it works great. If it doesn't, then you know to do something different. Or try a different approach. You don't have to know what you're doing (which totally freaks out the type-A planner in me). Also - God is so good.
I'm really good at doing my own thing and making plans and letting God sit in the backseat (anyone else?). But gosh, He doesn't want me to know what I'm doing. The greatest freedom of almost being 24 is the freedom to completely follow Him - without many of the responsibilities accumulated as we grow older. To me, this is terrifying, but I know it is so good. He's proven Himself to me over and over again in the last year and a half. He keeps telling me, "Trust me completely." I'm doing my best to listen.
I don't have to be perfect - it's taken years for me to learn to accept that, and I know that I have. But I also don't have to know what I'm doing? It's like I finally learned how to do the hard part of flying a plane (taking off) but now I'm in the air and there's 700 controls and I'm trying to think back to all I learned.* I don't really know anything because I've never done it before. And it's ok. You do it, and you figure it out. And I'm going to do whatever it is God leads me to.
*I certainly don't encourage flying a plane without lessons and just "figuring it out" but this is the best analogy I can give you of how my heart feels at the end of every day.
I recently worked through some questions I found on Lara Casey's blog* - questions that help you set goals that are reflective of what God is calling you to do, and that are authentic and honest. I highly recommend you grab a few sheets of paper and try working through them. I took a few hours and did them, and discussed what I wrote with Chris that night on our balcony over a glass of wine. We are really good at sharing our hearts with each other, but it pushed me to admit some things to myself and created wonderful conversation for the both of us. You certainly don't need a husband to work through this with... but it's so good to share these things out loud, and have someone keep you accountable. It makes every thought you put on paper truly real, and powerful. Seriously, these questions are so good.
God is asking me to be purposeful in the next year, but also peaceful. Let go. Let Him lead. He's already opened so many wonderful doors for me, and proven to me time and time again that I need to trust Him. That I can trust Him. His promise for us is true, and good.
*The link takes you to Part 5 of Lara Casey's goal setting series; scroll to the bottom of the post to see links to 1-4.
On a lighter note, here are some fun links for your weekend:
• These images do a really good job of explaining why I long to visit Paris.
• A UK mum's letter of advice to her daughter.
• Song lyrics significantly improved by cats.
• This series from Cup of Jo has been so interesting to me: 10 Surprising Things on Parenting in Mexico.
• Would love, love, love to vacation here for a few days.
• Currently listening to this. Also, our church released a new album today.
Happy weekend, everyone! Cheers to failing, and listening.