In the theme of introductions, I welcome you to what I am deeming Thoughtful Thursdays. I can’t promise that every day will be crowned with alluring alliterations. For the record, these probably won’t all be so serious.
After this long, challenging, but important year and a few wonderful vacations, I am struck with this feeling of having found myself again. At the time, throughout the year, I hadn’t even realized I lost myself. Sensing things so clearly now, I realize that my guard was up, getting me through every day that didn’t feel quite like fulfillment. It wasn’t as though I didn’t work hard or find success or enjoyment out of my every day. I was just putting myself and my heart on temporary leave.
This could have been dangerous, but sometimes it’s necessary to get you through something that is unsavory, but so vital to your growth. That’s how I’m approaching it anyhow.
In this moment, however brief (hopefully brief!) it may be, I can breathe and see again. I’m trusting myself and my body as my senses are reawakened. I have this opportunity to search for what makes me happy.
Around February this year, when classes were increasing their workload and I was struggling with the knowledge that teaching is not for me and yet here I was still juggling this program, I kept having recurring dreams. In them, I was pregnant and eagerly yearning for the child to be born. The constancy of the dreams scared me because I am in no way ready for children. Hello, I’m still balancing myself. However they kept appearing, so I did a little dream research. Take such a concept as you will, whether you prefer to think in the abstract or the concrete, but the interpretation struck me.
Apparently, whenever you dream of being pregnant, male or female, it suggests that a creative spark is surging within, wanting to come out, but has been repressed for whatever reason.
During my first semester of the Fellowship Program, I made it a point to write, journal, blog, whatever every day to keep my creativity flowing. As the spring semester approached, my classes were upped as well as the course work. I now had to travel back and forth between class, after spending a full day at work, three sometimes four days a week, fitting in as many workouts as possible. Writing was pushed aside for sleep when I should have made better time for it, but hindsight makes everything clearer.
After I read more about this dream interpretation, I began to reflect and recognize the truth behind it. My mind was swirling with story ideas, my fingers itching to take pen in hand and foster new worlds. When things began to slow, I wrote four stories in one month. I’m not saying they were great, but they were something.
They made me feel alive again.
On the plane home from California where I visited with and was inspired by my friend Brad, I outlined three chapters of the novel I’ve been considering for the past two years but never made any true progress.
I can’t get the ideas or that world out of my head, a matter in which I will never complain. Excitement is roaring, motivated by the freedom and lightness summer and rest brings.
Fittingly, my horoscope (Scorpio) today says: “Keep reminding yourself that your fulfillment is not only important but also possible. It will make it easier to accept that twists and turns are inevitable.”
What I learned most from this year is that in life, there are going to be trying times, challenging and painful, that you would not have chosen or wanted for yourself. That clean copy of your life you seek to write is really just a bunch of scratchy, messy rough draft copies. But those unpretty obstacles will be the place you learn the most about yourself.
Fulfillment is what you make of a situation, not necessarily what that situation is. Most importantly, make time for the things in life you are passionate about.
I have not been through a soul-crushing, physically bruising time. My Fellowship was a blessing and helped me grow in my education and my spirit. Don’t get me wrong, I understand this. I just didn’t happen to enjoy every minute of it. I probably complained more than I should. I wasn’t the most pleasant person to be around all the time. But now I can very much enjoy saying, it is a part of my past and it will help push me forward towards the true fulfillment I seek.
The hunt is what makes it worthwhile.