COPIED FROM FACEBOOK 3/18/2014
Alright-… Here’s my epic, (Semi-inspirational) bi-annual life post! Get comfy. It’s a doozy.
So, these past five months-…. Wow. I’m going to do my best to place this in perspective for you all since I rarely share the dirty details of what I’m going through on Facebook. I’m so far from friends and family, though, that I find this to be the easiest way to keep them up to speed.
Last October, after a lot of praying and hesitation, I quit my $20/hr job on the simple premise that I didn’t agree with what my energy was going into; I felt caught up the money and couldn’t fully back what I was doing on a daily basis with a sense of fulfillment. I’m against most pharmaceuticals, marketing, and just the over-all environment I was in, so, I paid off my car, saved up a couple grand, and set out on a venture to “find my purpose”, starting with music. The amount of internal struggling and fighting with God and myself was ridiculous. Every day I woke up with NO sense of purpose. The nights became my days, and my days, nights. I had no sleep schedule. No purpose for getting out of bed. No reason to try to do anything. EVERYTHING felt futile. I felt alone and like my vision of “living life” was SO out there and un-obtainable, so I just-… didn’t try. It was a real down-point in my life. All of it was.
I got depressed. (It was expected.) There was nothing driving my daily activities. I barely did things around the house and never got out. (Still barely do) After sometime (2-3 months) I decided to try a little more. I set up an audition at a small wine-bar in town with the hopes of being able to book regular (monthly or weekly) gigs to help cover the small bills I had because my savings was slowly depleting. Sure enough, they loved me, and wanted to book me! … For May. (It was January at the time). My heart sank. MAY?? How am I supposed to pay bills playing once every 2-3 months?? I can’t-… So, I gave up; Quite literally. (I’m still playing in May, I just stopped looking for others.) That was one speed bump that seemed to big and the thought of auditioning for and juggling multiple venues was just over-whelming. My head started spinning and I crept back into my hole of defeat. (Can you tell I’m easily deterred?)
Well, if I can’t figure out how to play to pay my bills, then I’ll need a part-time job, so, after a bit of searching, I applied for 2 positions, (And trust me, with my new ideals finding something that satisfied my soul was hard), and settled for a barista position. Owning my own coffee shop/musician/artist outlet has been a vision of mine for years, so I figured the experience I could gain from this would be-… beneficial? I lasted two days, (Yes, two.) and not because I couldn’t handle it, no. I just couldn’t make myself go in. I dreaded it. I can’t really describe it, but I just-… stopped going, leaving my pay and 2 favorite jackets behind. (Still feel pretty horrible about this, but life goes on~). I don’t know what made me give up on this, and at the time, I felt like such a failure for not being able to finish it out, or give them a proper notice. (That might be why I never announced getting the job, because I knew I wouldn’t continue it.)
Here I came, back to my rabbit hole, to burrow in it until my own self inflicted injuries healed. (This was around February.) At this point, I think I hit my worst. I was SO hard to see anything good in the future and I couldn’t tell if what I had envisioned for myself would ever come to fruition. So, I tried to figure things out again. It’s amazing the little things that set me WAY back. I got SO affected by small hiccups that make things not go EXACTLY my way. But-… that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. I mean, at the time, it was, but the more I look back on it, this was my way of sorting through what was right for me and what I wouldn’t settle with. And trust me, I wasn’t settling. Not even a little. I kept up looking for work, scanning through craigslist and help-wanted ads for retail, food service, animal shelters, veterinary clinics, you name it. Nothing- NOTHING was appealing. Not even a little. Everything I read through just made me groan internally, so I kept looking. I didn’t apply for anything.
Now, I don’t remember the pivot point, or what exactly I read or heard, but there was a point (recently) when I just exhaled everything. (For lack of better words.) It was probably the result of a few talks with close family and friends, and 5 months of soul-searching, but it was an important moment. I woke up early one morning, sat on the couch with my coffee, kept the TV off and the laptop closed, and just prayed. I didn’t know what I was praying for, but I knew that after exhausting everything “I” could do, there was only one thing left; to see what God wanted. So I told him that. I told him I didn’t know why I was talking to him, and that I wasn’t sure where I was headed, and that I didn’t know where to go. I told him “I’m done”, or basically, “Your turn.” ….the NEXT day a help-wanted ad popped up on craigslist. Call it luck. Call it whatever you want. I fully believe God has a hand in the timing of things, and this was one of those times. I applied. I had ALL of the credentials. I was excited (for once). It was a privately owned company. It was something I had done before, and, they dealt with movie/theatre prop makers, cos-players and more! (Did I mention I had JUST decided to start film school?) …Wow.
Needless to say, I got it. I’ve spent a few days there and I love it. I have a normal 9-5 job that I enjoy now, leaving my weekends and evenings free for music and life, but still giving me a sense of fulfillment at the end of the workday. Now, here’s what I really want you to consider… If I had continued with that barista job; If I showed up, put in my hours, made the money, and just-… tolerated it, I would NOT have this one now. I would’ve never been looking for it. I would’ve settled, despite my internal detest, and would STILL be settling. I know everyone has bills and isn’t as incredibly fortunate as I was, but get there-… get to that point where you’re not so dependent on your job so that you can reach the realization of “Why am I still doing this?”. I’m so thankful I had the opportunity to do some soul-searching, but I’m also thankful I took the time to pray and listen each time I felt stuck, starting with when I quit my first job back in October. I feel like I’ve just taken in a breath of fresh air, and I wake up a little happier each day. I’ve got purpose again. I have plans, and hopes. Don’t ever take advantage of being ‘happy’. It’s such a simple word, but it’s so incredibly important and if you’re not 100% happy, fix that. Do what you need to do to find your calling, or even begin your journey to find it. I still believe I’ve got a long way to go, before I find what I’m truly meant to, but these are big steps.
I felt like I should share this with you all, and I kind’ve made a promise to myself before I got this job that I would if I did, so here you go. I know I’m gonna have many more hurdles and speed-bumps, but one lesson I’ve learned (or so I hope) is to just relent in the beginning. I need to stop trying to do things on my own by going through the motions of what the society has installed, and get more in-tune with the spiritual side of things, letting myself be led by faith.
Also, my loving fiancé has been incredible. Not once did he rush me, push me, or make me feel like inadequate. His patience and understanding for what I was going through was just what I needed to find myself, and finding him 2 years ago was ANOTHER leap of faith. Those leaps are all defining moments in my life. I need to do them more. I feel like an adrenaline junkie.
If you got this far, awesome! I hope this was helpful with whatever struggle your in, or maybe to one that’s right around the bend. Feel free to share some of your stories below, or even mine, to someone you think needs it. Love you guys!