2015: Concluding an Era

Saturday, December 19, 2015

I wrote about 2015 almost 1 year ago. I re-read that post and it is scary how accurate it was. 

When I was a teenager, a former mentor told me she was concluding a great era of her life, I was confused. Weren't era's consisting of a long life span? And isn't this woman in her late 20's? But that is exactly what 2015 was for me, concluding a major era of my life and preparing me to begin a new one. 

In Pageantry, I’ve been involved in every aspect in every major system. My friends have aged out and my former clients are now the coaches and consultants. In the non-profit, my co-founder | friend and I are now at the phase where our first corps members from 2012 are now the college students and mentors. We have funding for the next year – every non-profiteers yearly relief!

Post graduate school, I’ve been a practicing professional for 3 years.  I've been officially telling people I will be leaving my current role this year. I love my work. I have the coolest and most inspiring students and the best colleagues. I've gotten to do everything I've ever wanted to do in this job, but I also feel someone new can come in and do my job better than me with a fresh lens. I can’t help, but be incredibly sad to be leaving something that has shaped over half of my 20’s, yet I am looking forward to what is to come and in the mean time, I intend to be joyful in the present.

I have no idea where I’ll end up this year. I’m looking at my situation with the attitude, I can do, go, or be whatever and how amazing is that? I have the ability to go in the direction that God has intended without anything holding me back. That doesn’t mean I will have a job right away, it may mean I struggle. But I get to choose. 

You may be reading this and think “good for you” or “glad everything is in order”, but interwoven in those bright moments during this era were very long days, weeks, or even months. I was depressed and have been to counseling 3 times in 5 years. I found out my mom had cancer and she is still battling it. I’ve been to more funerals than weddings. I had a broken heart from my first love and let’s be real, those are the worst. I was assaulted. People screwed me over…and about 1000 other things that could have let me think good riddance to this era of life. But I choose not to, because I can’t help but feel this era was so breathtakingly rich – full of adventure, discovery, crossed off bucket lists, goals achieved, beautiful people, and every other type of positive learning experience. I learned who I was in this era and who I’m not. I know sense of self is always evolving, but there is something gratifying about summarizing all that one has learned from emerging as a young adult to…let’s use this term loosely, an adult.

I’ve learned I can be both ambitious and gracious with myself. I can be both guarded and open to new. I can stand up for others and myself, yet be kind. I can forgive and actually forgive. I can be a goal setter and someone who values rest and seasons of ordinary. I can serve others without losing my sense of self. I am happy – with or without being in romantic love. With or without children. With or without amounts of disposable money. As long as I'm serving Christ and his purpose for my life - I'm good.  I don’t mind living my life in extremes. I can love with my whole entire being and I can welcome strangers and make them my family. I value memories and experiences over things. I believe in simplifying and selectivity. I have created a relationship with Christ – one not of my family or something that organized religion taught me. But I’ve also learned I can love a church too. I discovered that I have people in my life who are rooting for me. People who love life with the same charisma as I do and if not 10 times more than I ever will. I re-discovered the value of my parents, family, and the appreciation of a deep connection.

In this era, I found my backbone, my guts and values, and in closing this era, and walking into the unknown of the next, I am free.

MERRY CHRISTMAS! Happy Holidays! Happy New Year!

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