Decisions, Decisions

All my life, I’ve always wanted to grow up. I’ve always looked forward to being an adult. But I think, had I known the gritty details of what that meant, I wouldn’t have romanticized it in my dreams nearly as much.

With growing up, there are an indescribable amount of decisions to be made. Small, large, irrelevant, important, they come in all kinds. Maybe it’s my age, but all the decisions feel large and important, even if I know they really are mostly insignificant in the long run. I think all these decisions all at once are just so overwhelming. Even more, I think I just don’t know where to start with trying to figure out what I’d even want to do with my life. There are so many options and so many choices, and that’s a very good thing. But it can also be a sad thing because there are so many things I want to do. But I wonder now if I might not be happy doing those things I think I might love. Only lovely in my mind, but in reality not quite as much. Since I can’t try everything out before I get to do it, I kind of have to just close my eyes and jump into something to begin with.

In losing sight of what career I want, something my identity has always been tied to, I am reevaluating everything I thought I knew about myself. Who am I without a career to center my life around? Who am I when my aspiring job title is not how I can describe myself? Who is that Micki? That’s what I’m having to figure out now. What do I want in my personal life? Who do I want in my social life? What is going to make my life colorful and pleasantly interesting? What kind of career will make me truly satisfied? What will my life look like the day I wake up and feel so spectacularly lucky to be in this life?

In all of this, I feel like I am learning that there is more to life than just a career, which is something of a breakthrough for me. Ever since the third grade when I realized that not everybody gets somebody to love romantically, I switched my focus to being about making sure I found myself in a career I am happy in, since I can have more control over that. After all, you can’t make somebody fall in love with you. Since then, I have been focused on the dream career, whatever that has meant throughout my life, and hoping that love might find me. But I think what I’m finding out about myself in all of this is that I do think I really want that romanticism for myself, as much as I don’t want to act like I want it. Which now has me thinking about what I want in my personal life, which is something I’ve only ever dreamed about but not thought seriously about.

Bottom line: I still don’t know what I want. But I have embraced being alone at sea with no land in sight, and am ready to sail this journey with my eyes wide open.

The Shoulds and Should-Nots

I should be passionate about journalism. I should have loved my shadow day at Sauce Magazine. I should be able to convince myself this is right. I should love this. As much as I should, I love it not. And that’s where I get stuck. In this perpetual, and rocky, cycle of should. What is should? As it turns out, it’s an indication of something that is probable or correct. In my mind, journalism seems probable or correct. But I don’t feel it’s correct. Every time I endeavor back into journalism, there is inevitably something missing. And by missing I don’t mean it feels as if there is something lacking. What I mean is that there is a sense of adventure, of thrill, of newness, of movement, of freedom that is missing. Even in shadowing at Sauce Magazine, something I should have loved in theory for its beautiful mix of food and writing, I still felt a sense of loss. A sense of entrapment. But I realized that I had found a fascination in the “wrong” place; I was enamored by the two chefs who the editor interviewed but not in a way where I wanted to write about them and tell their story, rather that I was fascinated by everything they have done so far and all that they are doing currently, just exacerbating the idea that I want to be the one with the fascinating story, not necessarily telling a fascinating story in order to fill the hollowness of my own life. If I can have a fascinating life and tell fascinating stories in whatever way I see fit, then I think that would be the dream, but I don’t think that awaits me in journalism, as much as I wish it did. But still I’m stuck between should and a hard place because on the one hand I feel journalism would indeed be correct of me, it would fit to some extent. While on the other hand, I am so far from the shore at this point in terms of being able to understand what direction I should travel in. Instead I float along, seeking an island of intrigue and still being surprised that there is no land of intrigue insight, so much as islands depleted and worn from having already been explored with nothing new to offer. So I sail on, with little but hope guiding me into the seemingly endless expanse of water.