lately, i’ve noticed that i’m anxious all the time. my hands shake, my mind races, my stomach hurts and i have trouble sleeping.
the truth is my life is inevitably stressful right now; i’m in limbo in every way. i’m graduating in may with a master’s degree but no full time job on the horizon or even a clear career path. i’m single and happy to be independent, but also ready for a relationship. i’m 25 and therefore a little angsty to begin with.
so lately i’ve been focusing on what i can do, and the answer is to simplify.
two weeks ago, i deactivated my facebook acount and have been more content ever since. it wasn’t adding anything to my life, and it was actually making me unhappier. i was spending way to much time comparing myself to others and curating my own image to reflect the degree of perfection i expect from myself.
in this tumultuous time, i need to take care of myself first and foremost. not every text needs to be answered immediately. i don’t have to read every blog post in my reader. i should pick up a book instead of mindlessly surfing the internet.i want my life to be more about quality and less about quantity in every single way. i feel as though i’m being pulled in a million different directions and have a million different feelings welling up inside me, so i want to spend my time doing things that matter to me, and cultivate only the relationships which nourish me.
i’m very lucky that both my parents went through this stage in life, and can offer me wisdom from the other side. my mom recently found a folder containing just some of the cover letters she sent out after graduating with her master’s degree. in her revistionist memory she had totally forgotten her period of uncertainty, believing she had moved right from graduation to her first job. i mentioned to my parents that this reminded me of how when i read in memoirs the author will say, oh and then i happened in to this or that job, and then i happned to meet my husband, and then i ended up stumbling upon this or that great achievement–completely overlooking the fear, pain and uncertainty of the search. in retrospect i guess it all fits together and leads you to where you are, but while you’re in it it’s confusing and hard and not at all logical. however, that’s my life right now and i don’t want to go through it doping myself with mindlessness, i want to be an active participant.
sitting in a coffee shop just now, finishing this post, i was sitting next to two high schoolers, prom dates, discussing the drama involved with picking a prom group. i rolled my eyes a few times, thinking about how silly they were being to get worked up about this detail they’ll barely remember in five years. but then the girl stood up, caught my eye and smiled at me.
it reminded me just how much she has in front of her and how much she’ll learn before the time that she’s my age. my heart swelled and then i realized i wouldn’t have had that simple, poignant thought if i hadn’t have been anything but present.