Day after day, month after month, even year after year, the word ‘lost’ has been a never-ending ballad in my mind. Clouding the path to the mental clarity that I was so desperately in search of. For so long I imagined finally reaching that long-awaited dream, if and only if, I had solid proof of doing so. Only, by reaching any type of societal milestone.
In the end, all that was necessary to begin clearing said path was something that as it turns out, only a global pandemic could gift me with. Time.
Time to think, time to ponder, time to process, simply the time to accept where I was in life, and know that this place was perfectly imperfect—and being okay with that. Nothing more and nothing less. In fact, feeling lost is normal. To me, it means that I am choosing to be intentional with the path I choose to follow. Although, allowing myself that choice began to feel
like a luxury that I just didn’t have the time for. Suddenly, I became aware that anywhere I turned to, I was met with a timer that reminded me to hurry up and figure it out. To stop wasting time. Quarantine, on the other hand, met me with something different.
Although wildly uncomfortable, isolation and the current state of the world have peer pressured me to stop and take a moment. To break away from it all and surrender to the reflective thinking that rapidly began to invade my mind day in and day out, as the days and weeks started to fly by at home. Feelings of confusion, guilt, and even anger towards the lack of motivation and lack of discipline towards pursuing my truest desires, or simply to have more fun, became second nature. Until one overcast spring day. The day I finally realized that I am in fact, one of the lucky ones, that still has time.
It was in this moment, that that old ballad by the name of ‘lost’ was then replaced by an upbeat and wholesome tune by the name of ‘gratitude’. Gratitude for my memories of past experiences, gratitude for the opportunities I have had and the people I have met. Gratitude for the health of my loved ones, as well as my own. Purely, gratitude for my life.
As the clouded path began to clear, time no longer felt like a ghost that was there to haunt me from sunrise t sunset. Time became the gift I didn’t know I needed. See, for years and years, my main focus has always lied only within my future accomplishments. Meeting my goals and building my career. As it turns out, solely focusing on the future makes you miss your own life as it unfolds—in the present. Worse even, it enables you to lose sight of the importance of having outside interests and exploring the things that bring you joy. To create an authentic and well-rounded life. It enables you to lose a genuine zest and love for it. It enables you to lose love for yourself.
Time in quarantine has communicated this fact loud and clear. If it hadn’t, likely, the feeling of guilt would still be overpowering the feeling of hope. The hope, to continue to have the time to make things right with all whom I neglected, beginning with myself.
Living in quarantine has been tough, reentry into a new way of living will be tough too. What won’t be? Remembering this moment in time, as it will never be forgotten and therefore, the personal lessons it has brought me will not be forgotten either. My hope is, that even in the cloudiest of paths to come, we are confident in prioritizing all that truly makes us feel alive and letting that be our guide. As long as, we have the time.