At one point in my life, somewhere between the age of 13 and 17, I thought I knew how my life was going to play out. When in reality I’m currently twenty and I’m not even sure what pair of socks to buy. They just keep ripping. So I’ve currently stopped trying.
How my younger self thought my life would play out:
Graduate high school
Attend one year of Bethel School
Move to Orlando Florida and attend film school
Become a famous director by 22
How it actually went:
Graduated from high school
Attended one year of Bethel school
Applied for a second year at Bethel
Changed mind about the second year
Stayed in Redding anyway
Worked at a movie theater
Continuously dreamed of directing
Despite the fact that nothing went as planned, I’d say I kept a pretty positive attitude. I still have time to be a director. I’ve considered other film school opportunities. I’m in no rush for Marriage what-so-ever.
Sure, I had my moments: Like some days I would be in the middle of selling a ticket to a customer at the theater and I would think to myself: “I’m probably going to work here my entire life…”
Or theres the time I cried when I saw a photo of someone’s 50th birthday party on Facebook. It scared me because I thought “One day that’s going to be you Em” and for a moment I pictured myself being fifty. I had a second of panic, not because fifty is old, but because I don’t want to loose the years between now and then doing something I’m not passionate about.
It was dramatic moments like those that pushed me to make plans to move to Portland, because that’s what adults do: they make plans.
Until the signs change, north turns into south, and the wind blows the opposite direction and you’re just standing there; holding your Starbucks, wondering why your GPS is glitching.
Let me tell you why… because you’re an adult. That’s why. There is no logic behind it. You just wake up one day and the world decides you’re old enough to struggle. Then everything becomes 200% harder.
As much as I complain (mainly to be funny) I actually enjoy adult hood because I have a legitimate reason to be dramatic *wink*wink*.
Pre-adult days, whenever I wanted to do something (like get ice cream), I just asked my parents and they made it happen. Now if I have something I want to do, I have to make it happen myself. It’s not always easy; Sometimes the ice cream shop is closed and all I know to do is panic.
Portland, Oregon was like the Promise land for me. I’ve been on this journey for what feels like forever, trying to get there. The timing was never right and something else always came up instead. I would think it was the time to go, then my GPS would take me in circles and there seemed to be no route out of Redding. So I stayed. I stayed for an extra 12 months than I thought I would.
I gained so much from staying. If I would have left when I thought I was going to, my life would look completely different.
I thought I could get away with wearing ripped socks without anyone noticing, but people notice. Trust me. PEOPLE NOTICE and they end up buying you socks for your birthday.
But I kept my head above the water because I knew, if I worked hard enough, I could eventually be the person that gifted socks to those who don’t have any.
Finally, one day, the stars aligned… Everything practically fell in my lap: the money, a job, a house, and everything in-between. The route was clear and so I went for it. I finally feel like I can be the girl who gifts socks to the girls who have rips in theirs.
Yes, being an adult sucks sometimes, but it is so rewarding at the end of the day. Here I am in a coffee shop downtown Portland, wiser and more hipster than ever. I never thought I would be here.
It was not on the 13-17 year old Emily’s list, but it’s amazing.
The reality of life is this: Nothing goes as planned, ever… but life is amazing that way. We all get scared that we will be stuck where we don’t want, but you won’t if you don’t want to be. The stars will eventually align in your honor. Go with the flow, roll with the punches, and breath it all in.
Be the over thinking, dramatic, hilarious, emotional adult that wears ripped up socks, because you owe it to yourself.
Okay, that’s deep stuff.