“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for answers; they cannot now be given to you because you could not live with them. It is a question of experiencing everything, and at present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer.” [Rainer Maria Rilke]
A couple of months ago this quote popped up on my TimeHop app, and I ran across it again today. My heart and my mind have been quite restless these last few weeks as I’ve started to evaluate where exactly my life has been and is headed in this next year or so. Last week I registered for my senior Fall semester of undergrad, and it had me asking the question…“what’s next?”
What a loaded question that is.
And I don’t even mean what’s next as in do I go to grad school or do I look for a job in the area of my degree. Of course I am questioning those things, but I also sit here questioning where I’m going to be at the end of next year and where I want to be within the next 5. I have so many questions and I’m not really sure what the answers are or where to even begin looking for them. These moments of complete and utter confusion are hard to figure out sometimes, but as this quote reminds me…the answers are not always meant to be found when we are searching for them simply because we’re not always ready for what those answers might mean for us. If there’s something that I have learned over the last year or so, it’s that answers come in time and sometimes time is a bitch.
If anyone would have asked me 6 months ago if I would be standing in the spot I am right now, I would have thought that they were crazy. If anyone would have asked me 2 years ago if I thought I would be 1 year away from graduating college, I probably would have started crying in frustration and disappointment. If anyone would have asked me 5 years ago where I would be, this is never what I would have guessed for myself. In fact, five years ago I pictured being married to the then love of my life with a nursing degree and a job at one of the local hospitals. 3 years ago I pictured myself as a complete failure because I let my emotions take over my life and I made so many mistakes I never could have ever pictured myself making. I used to spend so much of my time wondering why all of the things I have been through were necessary, but at those points in my life, I never could have handled the answers..and I probably wouldn’t have even believed them. I used to question literally every aspect of my life. The people. The experiences. My college education. I can thank my anxiety for a lot of my questions, and the rest can be handed off to the general journey of life. I was the person that had to have literally every single detail of my life planned out, and that was one of the most stressful things because as we know…life doesn’t always follow the plans we’ve laid out for ourselves. 5 years ago, I was going to be getting married. 3 years ago, I was going to be a nurse. 2 years ago, I was closed off, heartbroken, and trying to heal. 1 year ago, I was weak and stuck in a place I couldn’t escape. 6 months ago, I had an ‘esteemed’ job at a big hospital. At this moment, I am stronger and wiser and still healing. I’m not married…and I’m so grateful. I’m not going to be a nurse, and I’m excited for what my future career is going to bring. I work as a server, and I don’t regret quitting my old job. My life has gone the complete opposite as according to plan…and I’m grateful for it.
Life is hard and it can be super confusing because it doesn’t have an answer book anywhere because there is no cheating life and all of the experiences you were meant to go through. In the last couple months my life has done a complete 180, and now I am capable of clearly seeing the answers to all the questions I used to have because I’m in a place of being able to accept and understand them like I never would have been able to before. That being said, I’m doing my best to stop searching for the answers that currently haunt me because they will come to me in time, when I am ready for them, and I have to continuously remind myself of that. But because of being who I am…I hate time..and a I love it all in the same. People always say that “time will tell,” but sometimes I feel like time takes it sweeeet sweeeet time when it comes revealing the answers I so desperately seek. It’s such a hard concept to grasp that time will pass no matter what I’m doing, and I can spend it constantly searching for answers that will show themselves eventually, or I can spend it enjoying the time that will pass anyways.
I’m not sure where I’m going to be a year from now…or 3 years from now…or 5 or 10 years from now. But I hope that wherever I am, I have spent the passing years doing things that make me happy with people that make the time pass easier, because life is too short to be spending it planning out the memories rather than embracing what’s happening right in front of me.