When I graduated college a few months ago, I was turned out into the world with no goals to speak of and a rather fuzzy idea of who I was that was the result of too little sleep, too many essays, and not enough "me" time.
Then came a period of panic as I tried to remember what I liked to do and to figure out what I wanted to do. It's all well and good to stand up at a reception for outstanding graduates and tell a bunch of strangers' parents that you just want to be happy when you grow up, but it's quite another thing to know what it is that will make you happy.
What with musicals and summer institute and being brave, this summer has been quite an interesting ride so far. Best of all, I think, once all that settled down, I found myself remembering how to be me again quite easily. It turns out all I needed was to feel again that old summer feeling of long, lazy days at home reading novels.
Of course, this summer is different in several points. Most notable, in my opinion, is that I've been making an effort to get up every morning and have a real day. None of this sleeping in until noon and spending the afternoon/evening in my pajamas watching day-long marathons of Wife Swap or America's Next Top Model or whatever show I've taken a fancy to this year on cable. I try to do "productive" things with my day, things like crocheting, sketching, and brushing up on my Spanish grammar. I'm slowly working toward being a morning person. How's that for a goal for you?
You wouldn't know it to look at my life thus far, but just before dawn is my favorite time of day. I love the greyness of the light, how clean and new everything feels, the way the birds sing their brightest, the slow burgeoning into full day. Sunrise is so much more gradual than sunset in all the best ways.
I guess that brings me to my real point: my goals. It turns out I've discovered some, and I'm very much in love with them.
Aside from the whole "morning person" thing, I'd like to become a substitute teacher. Kylie put the idea in my head, and after my aunt suggested it, too, it started to solidify into a real desire. It would give me a taste of teaching (sort of) and maybe help me decide, after all the hemming and hawing and naysaying, whether I really want to go down that road. Besides, it's something to work toward, and that makes me feel all warm and happy inside.
I've already completed my first step toward becoming a substitute: find a part time job so I can save up the money for the application process on my own. Last week, I scored a position at DownEast Basics, and I couldn't be happier. It was a great object with me in looking for a job to find one at an establishment I like so my work experience would be a happy one. Did I ever see myself working at a clothing store? Not so much. Do I see myself totally loving working at this particular clothing store? Very much yes.
My bigger goal, one I discovered earlier in the summer after a conversation with my bishop and have been treasuring up ever since, is to take a trip to England. Most especially, I decided this morning, to visit Charing Cross Road. Back before all the self-rediscovery and short term goals, I came up with this hazy, definite-ish plan to find a job and save up the money to get myself back to London as soon as ever I could. Visions of taking the train to Bath and Stratford-upon-Avon and maybe even Manchester and Edinburgh have been floating in my head for months.
This morning, I started reading The Last Little Blue Envelope, and apparently, Charing Cross Road is one long avenue of bookstores. I don't know how I didn't discover this before. Last time I was in London (all three glorious days), my greatest desire was secretly to visit a bookstore. That never happened during my ten-day whirlwind high school tour of Europe, but now that I'm grown up, by golly, I will make it happen! I may just spend a week working my way down the one street if it suits my fancy. And hey, Charing Cross Road also has that location-of-the-Leaky-Cauldron angle working for it. Also, Foyles. Why did nobody tell me about Foyles?
Little did I imagine, lo, those two months ago, that I would feel so empowered and directionful so soon. I love the sunshiny feeling that is pervading my life right now. I love who I am, where I am, and where I'm going to go.
What are some of your goals?