If you’re like me, change is something that sounds consistently debilitating no matter how many times you’re faced with it. There have been so many moments where I have sat there and thought to myself, “This is the day that you are going to accept life on life’s terms. This is the day that you are going to let go of your worries and fears about the future and just let things happen.”
They’re these words of self-encouragement that feel so monumental at the time, that feel so permanent and long-lasting. And, for at least a little while—sometimes a week, sometimes even a couple of months—these words work. Yet, at some point or another… something in my life actually changes.
And suddenly, I’ve forgotten I had any of these conversations with myself. This past year has been a rocky one. It’s been a little over 365 days at this point of constant transition—the transition into college, into a new relationship, out of a major I hated, out of my relationship, into a new job, back into that relationship, into a new major I still may or may not like, and finally out of that relationship for good (just writing all of this out is exhausting). In more simple terms, it’s been a year of realizing how absolutely lost I am.
It’s been a year of losing myself and discovering myself all over again. Even though plenty has happened that I can smile about too, these changes that have taken place are what have shaped my experiences most. If we’re talking about self-revelations, the revelation of being lost is one that we all have at many points, probably more than we’d like to. It’s a pretty discouraging one.
We all do everything in our power to prove to ourselves and others that we’ve got it all figured out. We look into the future and do our best to identify as many aspects of it that we can, so we can avoid uncertainty altogether. In this ridiculously fast-paced world we’re a part of, there is so much pressure from so many sources to have everything figured out all the time, to always know where you’re going and what your next step is.
But, uncertainty is something that we can never outrun. It will always be faster, it will always have the upper hand, it will always win. This right here, might be the most important revelation of all. There are going to be things that happen throughout life that are out of our hands, and the more we reach into the future and try to plan out where we’ll be in five years, the more distressed we will be when life puts a big fat detour in the middle of the road. And, life shows no mercy—where a detour fits, there most likely will be one.
I’m trying to think about it like this: The changes and tribulations that are happening right now are giving me strength. They are making me a more resilient me, a more forgiving version of myself—towards myself, for all the ways I’ve “failed,” and for all the ways I intended my path to go where it just didn’t.
It might be really hard not to run away from the transitions and anxieties that often enter our lives… but if we find a way not to, if we find a way to not be so scared and embrace where we are, right now— we will find ourselves ready for the stages of life we were trying so hard to reach for. We can begin welcoming uncertainty as more of a friendly acquaintance, and less of an enemy.