It’s been an interesting week. I have a lot of words in my head, and words are how I process–so, today you’re getting the words. The more coherent ones, at least.
The past seven days have been full of some crazy stressful stuff that I never would’ve expected. My grandmother had a car accident and my parents unexpectedly went out of town for five days to be with her (she’s doing okay now). Hurricane Irma blew through, leaving us without power for three days. My car got a nail in the tire, and on the way to the shop driving on my spare, my rear brakes went out and I almost crashed my car. Finally, I lost my main reliable source of income at the moment. I know freelancing is an unpredictable job, and that clients come and go. But it was a very bad time for this client to go: not only do I need money (my car needed four new tires and a brake adjustment), but I’d just decided a week or two earlier to forgo college for a while and try to make a living writing without a degree. So losing this job (which was an amazing answer to prayer back in May) didn’t exactly instill confidence in me on that end.
Wednesday in particular was crazy. I was headed to breakfast with my friend Cari when my mom noticed a nail in my tire. After breakfast, I got a spare tire put on, and then my mom and I ran to a friend’s house to take a shower (our first in 48 hours). Then we headed to the shop. On the way, my brakes started acting up, and I freaked out as I nearly rear-ended several people. Next it was off to the library in search of WiFi; they didn’t have any, so Cari picked me up and we went to Starbucks briefly so I could at least clean out my inbox before heading to church, where I helped teach kids’ choir and kids’ Bible study and didn’t get home until 9:30 PM. I felt physically horrible from my busy day and from subsisting on peanut butter crackers for two days (#thanksirma). Basically, things have been crazy, and I’m kind of just waiting to see what undesirable thing is going to happen next.
Two things in particular stuck out to me about this week. One, I think I handled everything much better than I would have at any other point in my life. With help, I’m finally getting to the point where I’m more confident in myself and I have faith in Christ to be competent for me. Two, can I just say–I LOVE MY PEOPLE. I literally cannot count the number of people who heard about my grandmother’s accident and my parent’s absence and immediately emailed, texted, or called (even if they didn’t live in the same state) to say: can we bring food? Do you want to stay with us? How can we help you? When our power was out, the same thing happened: practically everyone I know was offering to let me come take a shower or enjoy a hot meal or use their WiFi to get some work done–which means that I know a lot of awesome people.
And speaking of awesome people, last week wasn’t all bad. Last Saturday, in fact, was one of the best days of my life. Hannah and Emma and I met in seventh grade and immediately became close. Two years ago, though, Emma and her family moved to Germany. Hannah and I continued seeing each other as often as possible–but we missed Emma! Emma is back in the States for college now, and we saw each other for the first time in two years last Saturday. The three of us couldn’t stop smiling all day long. I foresee lots of day trips to Emma’s college this year, and that makes me so so happy!
This whole week has been weird. Really, my life in general right now is just weird–not necessarily a bad weird, or a good weird, but just WEIRD. Things aren’t always scary, aren’t always frustrating, and aren’t always super fun–but they just feel weird! I’m still here, and a lot of stuff is the same, but I’m different. I’m not the same person I was a year ago, six months ago, or even one month ago. My life is completely different than it was a year or six months ago (or a week ago, haha), and I like it that way. There were a whole lot of things and places and relationships that I was ready to be done with once high school ended, and some of those transitions away went smoothly–others didn’t. It’s weird because, like I said, I’m still here. I didn’t move away to go to college or do an internship or do missions work; for the next couple of years, I’m planning to live in my parents’ house and work from home/in my hometown. But I’m different, and my life is different, and I like it that way. I’m ready to move on.
For the most part, I’m happy with my life right now. Sometimes (mostly when I’m looking at social media) I’ll feel a twinge–I wish I could experience living in a dorm. All my friends will go to college and leave me. Can I really make a viable income writing without a degree, or am I being idealistic and unrealistic? There are lots of questions, but at the same time, that’s kind of a fun thing. The rest of my life is ahead of me–the sky is the limit!! Who knows where I’ll be in five or ten years? That’s a question that scares me a little, but it excites me, too. Honestly, who knows?! I could be living here in my suburban hometown, writing for a fitness magazine and owning two dogs. I could be coaching softball, publishing my next book, and becoming a foster mom in another state. I could be living in a city apartment somewhere, working as a church secretary and a certified personal trainer and doing community theater. For the most part, I love love love this stage of life. I feel far more confident in myself and who I am than I ever have. I’m done with school (hopefully for good), and I’m becoming an adult, however slowly–and it’s making me feel free. Which is a really nice feeling. I’m still trying to discover, though: can I have my dream jobs without a degree and make enough of an income to live on? How long will it take to get to that point? Can I get to that point without a degree? Furthermore, how will my health play into this new period of life? I don’t have the energy to be out working all day every day, so I’d prefer to work from home, even though I don’t want to be alone all day every day. I realize it sounds like I’m being picky and I’ll probably have to compromise, but I just can’t physically do some things. I don’t know the answers to any of these questions and problems, but I do know that I’m going to do absolutely everything I can to write without a degree. And if it doesn’t happen a few years down the road, well, I’ll have some money saved up and I can always go back to school, as much as I’d rather not.
To sum it all up, this season of life just feels WEIRD, and this was one of the craziest and most stressful weeks I’ve ever had. But I think I’m liking it–all of it. Here’s to the next week and month and year. Honestly, after the last seven days, what’s the worst that can happen? *knocks on wood*
Were you affected by Hurricane Irma? Do you have any advice for me as I figure out #adulting? What have you been up to this week?