Do you realize or fully think about the overarching choices you make every day? Yes — there are the daily minutiae of what to eat, wear, say, do, etc. There are the bigger decisions of what jobs to seek out, what job to accept, what relationships to invest in, what values to practice, where to live, etc. However, there are the REALLY big ones that shape everything that maybe some people have never really thought about.
To stay, or to go.
Choosing to stay. Choosing to go. Thus far my big decisions regarding leaving felt obvious and natural. Not easy, but clear to me. Graduate from high school, leave home state to go to university. Graduate from college, leave USA for work abroad (temporary commitment). Time’s up at job abroad, return back to USA. Now… working a job with a temporary commitment in a new city… weighing my options.
Many people who are where they are may not have fully examined that they chose to stay. Often people react to hearing about my decision to move to Uganda with “Ugh, I wish I could do that!” or “I’ve always wanted to pick up and go.” What I don’t think people realize is that in never making the decision to go, they’re making the decision to stay. And I’m not knocking staying. Staying is different than leaving, but still hard and powerful. Dreams are personal, professional, big picture, present day, who you want to be, who you want to be with, how you hold the titles you’ve inherited (daughter, sister, friend, worker, student) or add to them (mother, wife, confidant, mentor, leader).
And pursuing your dreams isn’t always about location. But sometimes it so, so is.
But mostly, it’s beautiful to be where you are. Even if you have a future in mind, a dream in mind, a change in mind (as we all do…), the present is a gift. Learning to be content in the now is something I am forever refining and practicing. May you be blessed with this contentedness today and every day. Love yourself and love others right where you are (physically, emotionally, spiritually, in your weakness, in your achievements, in your joy, in your pain). It’s all part of the journey and going together is better than alone.
Thanks for going with me.