I wish I was one of those people. One of them. Who know exactly who they are, what they want, and where they are going.
It just seems so simple for some; the ease of their life paths, so denoted and convicted. Or at least social media makes it seem that way. I constantly sift through photos of people in my feeds; people I know in real life, or have known over the years, and they all seem to be living without debate.
I wish it were that easy for me.
I wish I could just be one of the women who has always known that they wanted to be a mom, who has accepted a simple and domesticated life without a second thought. Or one of those people who has unwavering love and conviction in their choice of life partner; a divorcee’s who is not so scarred by their dissolved marriage that a few short years later I could be found in the throws of a new marital bliss. I wish I were a person who, since I was small, has known that this career was meant for me, or that field is absolutely my passion. Or that person who blatantly just knows that conventional lifestyles are not for them and finds a career where their creativity can flow, travel is easily accessible and they are never in the confines of a 5″x8″ cubicle. One of those people who has known since high school that their destiny is not in their hometown, and so they move across country without a second thought because it’s where they fit; where they are meant to be.
It’s not even so much that I am jealous of the lives (seemingly) being lived by my social media companions, because I know that their lives are not without flaws, and more than anything, I truly don’t know if I even want some of these things (a baby, a husband, an unconventional job, thousands of miles between family…). The real envy lies in how easily these people seem to fall into their lives. How they find jobs or lovers or talents and hobbies seamlessly. How they move along this logical life path. My boyfriend/husband/partner is the best thing to ever happen to me! Oh look, I’m engaged even though I was divorced not two years ago! Now I have this great job that fills all my passions! Look at all this fancy traveling we do! How exciting is it that we are planning our first child! I want to just reach out through my screen, grab them by the shirt collars with shaky hands and ask them “HOW DID YOU GET HERE? HOW DID YOU KNOW THIS WAS WHAT YOU WANTED? HAVE YOU NOT HAD PAST EXPERIENCES THAT MAKE YOU THINK TWICE ABOUT THINGS?”
Instead, to the contrary, I live every single day with incessant debates lobbing back and forth in my head:
Do I really want kids? How could that work? Would I be a terrible mother?
Could I bring myself to get married again? Do I even believe in marriage?
What career path am I meant to be in? What are my talents and passions, exactly?
Do I want to move out west? Would I immensely regret leaving my friends and family?
Am I a giant coward if I don’t ever take the plunge to move out of this town?
What do I *actually* want to do with my life?
And then comes the overwhelming worry about how long I have to make these choices before I run out of options or years of life. I keep notebooks of pros and cons and lists of possibilities that I am afraid to act on. It has become an obsession that renders me immobile and helpless.
The thing is, my life is so far from the course I charted all those years ago. And while that detour has decidedly become OK with me, it makes me anxious about my future and at times, leaves me with a tinge of envy as my life seems to have gone backward; so confident and sure of what I wanted at 22 and now at 29, entirely unsure about every facet of life.
Of course, I understand that I don’t truly know the inner workings of my social media people’s real wants and desires and that social media is just for show, often portraying things not as they really are. But still. It would be nice to feel that I weren’t in a constant state of panic over my life; as if I am trudging uphill, blindfolded with peeks of sun coming in through slits, leaving me guessing at what I just saw.