|My brother. Yes, that's a half-chewed grape in his mouth.|
I guess I'd better specify exactly what it is I mean by "growing up." When I refer to growing up, I am basically referring to the age group consisting of seventeen to twenty-two year olds (and possibly older). This is a time in nearly everyone's life where they are trying to figure out exactly what they want to get out of life and how they are meant to make that happen.
This sentiment -- this feeling of terror in the face of the unknown -- is one that many are familiar with. Still, the realization that others are dealing with they exact same questions you are trying to tackle somehow doesn't make you feel much better. This is likely because we all realize that these aren't questions that anyone else can truly answer for us; rather, they are decisions we each have to make on our own.
Up until now, our parents have been the decision-makers in most of the big dilemmas our life has presented us with. They generally had the final say at the very least. Now we're supposed to strike out on our own to "find our fortunes" ( that's a Howl's Moving Castle reference, for those who care). It's terrifying and exhilarating all at once.
On the one hand, it's scary trying to move from being supported to supporting yourself, finding where you fit, and where you want to be. On the other hand, it's wonderful when you feel like you're finally getting closer to accomplishing those dreams you've desired for so long and it feels like the world is at your fingertips.
Coming from my own prospective, I have the potential and the desire to become a published author. There's much I have to do in order for me to accomplish that dream, but it feels doable now. There are times when I can almost taste it. But there are also times when I feel like I'm looking through the wrong side of the telescope and all of my goals are comically out of reach. I feel out of place in my hometown (particularly after living in Paris, France) and I'm literally itching to get out of here, but my circumstances have determined that I stay for now.
It's like those cartoons from when I was a kid where the person trying to get the horse to move dangles a carrot in front of its nose to keep it going, but the carrot is always out of reach. There are times when I wonder if I'll ever reach the carrot at the end of the line or if it'll always just be a dream and never a reality.
I realize I sound a bit melodramatic and I apologize for that. Still, it's a legitimate feeling that I know I'm not alone in experiencing. It's a big world and there are so many opportunities to shoot for the moon; but at the same time, there's such a potential for failure that it can nearly paralyze a person at times.
All in all, I know its all in the hands of God. He knows exactly where I (and everyone else) need to be and if I listen and follow, I'll be able to finish the race. Trusting Him is key and listening to His voice is more than necessary.
Still, what I wouldn't do for a couple of neon signs to point the way for me right now . . .