This time a year ago, I moved to New York and started my apprenticeship. I got on a train, got lost on the way to the office, walked in, hung up my coat, and stepped into a new stage in my life that would alter me fundamentally.
I had no idea what to expect, and I couldn’t have guessed how much I’d grow over the coming year. Looking back on everything feels impossible and unreal.
We all face crossroads. Decisions that close some doors and open others. A path that leads you away from one life and into another.
The important part is recognizing that making that choice is almost more crucial than where you go in consequence of it.
I can live my life knowing that I can make life-altering decisions and see them through. And, I know that I can do it again. If I had not taken the chances I did, I never would have known what I’m capable of.
The biggest change from a year ago to now is my mindset.
My most significant change is in how I view myself, others, and life. It’s all been mindset. It took a move across the country and meeting so many different types of people to make me realize that all of the things I hated about myself, all the mistakes I made, the pain I felt and/or caused, were not abnormal. None of my heartaches and failures happened because I was irreparably broken, damaged, or unsavable. They were all because I’m human.
No one makes it out of here without being human, and I don’t know why I thought I was supposed to be the exception. As if I was somehow a disgraceful person for having experienced some of the most universal flaws and pains you can have while being alive.
Loss, addiction, fear, grief, betrayal, depression, anxiety, failure, mistakes; all of these are not fables meant to scare children — they are the realities of living.
We all have the choice to fight them, confront them, and live with them. Heal from them, move through them. We don’t get to choose if we do, but we do get to decide how we do.
We make those choices every day, some days better than others, admittedly. But we keep choosing.
For me? I strive to bring my best self to work every day. I make a point to give myself time when I need it and give others time when they need it. I choose to extend compassion, and I resolve to meet anxiety with assurance and confusion with support.
I choose to accept that I am only just getting started, and I have so much growing to do.
I choose to acknowledge the spikes of envy that come with comparison and let them go.
I choose to let myself feel pride in what I’ve accomplished so far.
I choose to trust Jesus and face each day one at a time.
What choices are you making? What life are you choosing?
Most importantly, who do you want to be a year from now? Start making those choices today, and you’ll get there.
To anyone who has been following along since last March, thank you for reading. It means so much to me.