Today's blog challenge is to use the quote, "Not all those who wander are lost." - J.R.R. Tolkien
Not all those who wander are lost... but I certainly am. In my defense, a wizard never showed up on my door and gave me a magical ring and a heroic mission to complete. Maybe, there is still a chance. Gandalf, are you out there? Perhaps, I had skipped down to the shops to buy some milk at the exact moment you stopped by? You didn't have a pen to leave a note? I promise, I'm game, if only you could provide a little direction.
I can't help but feel lost. As though, there is something I am missing. Something I am supposed to be - that I just can't see. Life would be a heck of a lot easier if a wizard just showed up at your door and helped you fulfil your destiny. Alas, life is not an epic literary trilogy and as mere mortals we must wiggle and squirm in discomfort as we try to find our path.
Life continues to move forward, even if we are unsure. Our doubts cannot stop the movement of time. My life is not as I would have expected it to be. In college, I was smart and passionate. I really believed in my potential. I would have imagined I would have been more successful. Not in the ways of money or material possessions - I never cared too much for those things. But, I really wanted to make a difference. I wanted to make this world a better place. After I got my Bachelors degree with a major in Political Science, and a minor in Psychology, I worked as a youth counselor in a residential treatment facility. There I saw a lot of pain. I can't imagine what evil could inspire people to hurt children in the ways I saw children hurt. Years after the abuser was gone, I looked on, the pain was still fresh & their flashbacks too frequent. It hurt to see. I tried to help, but who knows what difference was made. My heart was too soft & sponge like to maintain a job like that long term.
So, I saved my cash, and dreamt of backpacking Europe to appease my hurts. I applied to grad school and was accepted. I left for Europe the summer before grad school began. I met an Aussie in London. He was tall and had a Slavic name that sounded full of dread. His heart was soft. I tried I to forget him when we returned to our opposite corners of the world. I failed.
Life continued. Grad school began. My mother lost her battle with cancer & my brain filled with the fog of pain. Summer break came and I went to see the Aussie I could not forget. We fell in love. I returned to the States to finish my degree. I earned my MA in Comparative & International Politics. I returned to Oz on a working holiday. I could only work for any one company for six months at a time & I found work in call centres. I hated it. I felt the pain of squandered potential.
In the midst of share houses & call centres - the doctors back home diagnosed my dad with cancer. It had already spread to his brain. Every fiber of my being screamed, "No! Not my daddy, too!" This was around the time - that time seemed to fold in on itself. Although, this happened nearly two years ago - it would seem believable that he was only diagnosed a few months ago. Only able to leave Australia for three months at a time due to bridging visa restrictions - I returned home on two separate occasions - a total of six months time. I was able to care for him & hold his hand as he left this world.
Upon returning to Australia, a myriad of circumstances conspired to kick me in the feels one after another, contributing to what I lovingly refer to as, Crapfest 2013.
So here I am, February 2014, jobless and still seemingly lost. Yet, the dust is beginning to clear and things are beginning to look up. I've been granted my Australian Permanent Residency and I'm attempting to pick myself up - brush myself off and find my path.
Anytime, Gandalf, anytime... you're guidance would certainly be appreciated. You want me to go throw a mysteriously dark and powerful magic ring into an epic pit of lava at Mount Doom? Okay, I got this - at least I'd have some direction in life.
Labels: Expat Blog Challenge, LOTR