…because of a hard drive

in eighth or ninth grade i went to ‘fall conference-‘ a youth retreat for the catholic church. the theme that year was “called to be’ and though i don’t necessarily remember how the information was presented or processed at the time, what i do know is that it ended up being something that has resonated with me my entire life. what this means for me is that i live my life with purpose. whether you are religious.spiritual.both or neither, i believe we are all here to do something, to fulfill our own individual missions. for ourselves. and for each other.  i believe that our lives are intended to have meaning in whatever way that might play out.

and so it’s kind of a running joke with my friends about this internal drive i’ve always had that causes me anxiety about not doing enough. it’s a kind of internal drive that keeps me up at night planning on how my energy can best be put to use. it’s the kind of drive that stresses me out when i recognize that i’m not spending my time doing something i’m passionate about. and it’s that kind of drive that pushes me forward and challenges me to do more and be more. maybe you feel it too. and if you don’t feel it, maybe you haven’t found it yet or maybe you aren’t listening. but i think it’s there, somewhere. i think it’s the kind of thing you can spend your whole life looking for and that it’s also the kind of thing you can stumble upon in the middle of the day.  i also know that it can be something that you’ve always been sure of, something you’ve dreamed of from the start.

you probably already know, but i’ve always felt this specific pull towards social justice, poverty, and understanding the human condition. this pull has colored my decisions for as long as i remember. it is why i changed my major from chemistry, pre-med to social work one morning while i was sitting on the floor of my dorm room brushing my hair during my sophomore year of college. it’s why i dropped all of my classes and signed up for new ones before i even had breakfast. and it’s probably why i’ve always found myself most happy when i doing work and participating in activities that align with what i believe i was put on this earth to do.

today was meaningful because in between the hustle and bustle of work, progress notes, sleep deprivation, and clinical supervision, things worked out for me in a way that i believe only happens when something is meant to be. because on days like today when you are looking for something wonderful to happen, you might remember that you can create it for yourself. i’ve said it before, but i think we all need to get scared of our dreams sometimes. i think we need to challenge ourselves to live out that purpose even if that means we might fail along the way.  what’s most important is that we try. what’s important is that you find something that gives you energy, a sense of purpose, and challenges you to become a better person.  the person that you were meant to be. 

and on days like today, i like to ask myself who it is i am going to be. i like to remember that i always have the choice to become, that life is a project. that the decisions i make are the results i’ll receive. and i like to remember that the possibilities are endless.  you are who you want to be, after all. and so now i challenge you.  to find your mission and to live it out.  to allow yourself some time for careful consideration on how you want to spend your days, how you want to create your life. who will you be and what will you do? it may be a whisper or an open door, but i hope you’re watching.listening.searching.

maybe it’s related to your work and maybe it’s not.  maybe it will come to you in the form of how you spend your free time and who you choose to spend it with.  or maybe it’s about donating your time.efforts.and energy towards a cause that is greater than yourself. perhaps it’s the message you hope to tell the world. whatever it is, i hope you are looking for it.  and whenever you find it, i hope you live it.

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5 thoughts on “…because of a hard drive

  1. i’m sitting here in my living room trying to finish my homework and all i can do is sit here and read your blog posts. some of them have moved me to tears and all of them have put a warmth in my heart that i sometimes forget to acknowledge. in your “about” you mentioned your goals of being someone to illicit change in the world. and as i’m on my second day of being distracted from homework i am noticing that your goals are being accomplished. i have been reflecting on my life and i can’t help but feel that i could be doing more. get a better job, do better in school, stay focused on homework. that’s pretty depressing. but after hearing the things that you have to say i feel energized and ready to take on the world. i could dwell on my wrong-doings for the rest of my life. but instead i would like to give back. be kind. and patient. and open-minded. and put my judgements aside and find out who people really are. you have encouraged and reminded me how everyday is a blessing and how every moment can be a good, positive, and compelling one. i’m not sure if your goal is specified to reach EVERYONE with your kind words and positivity but it has reminded me that the good things are free and can change an outlook on everything. thank you. i hope you find success. it seems that happiness has reached you <3

    1. i have read your comment several times now, and I just thought you should know that it means more and more to me each time. i cannot thank you enough for taking the time to read my other blog entries and to send me such a kind, thoughtful, and encouraging comment. it’s people like you that keep me moving forward. and it’s people like you that remind me that we can always work towards becoming better. i don’t think there are words to describe how happy it has made my heart that you have began thinking about how you can be and do more. the best thing i ever did for myself (and i think for those around me) was to make a commitment to living out my best life in any and all ways that i could– in the way i treated others, myself, and the world around me. i’ve really enjoyed seeing all the places and lessons i’ve learned through doing so. i am so grateful that my blog has helped to remind you of everyday blessings and that we are in control of our own happiness and lives. from the bottom of my heart, i hope you continue to look for and find the good. i would absolutely love to hear from you again :)… and i hope you know i am sending all of my warmest, kindest, and most positive thoughts your way. again, i cannot thank you for taking the time to brighten my day.

      :)

      jessica

  2. I feel the same way about social justice and the yearning to do more. While in college I changed my major a few times until I got it right – and I got 2 more after I found my “one.” 136 credits later, multiple fulfilling jobs, and after starting several non-profit student organizations, I found myself at job interviews being asked the infamous question, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” To this, I always respond, “It’s a cliche phrase but I believe that everything happens as you go about living. I propel myself in the direction of opportunities, and even if I find myself juggling one million other things, I never miss an opportunity.” Now, I cannot help but feel that I’ve succumbed, against my will, to the boring, middle-class, suburban life that I swore off since birth. I cannot find my will and my drive anymore. I am more lost than ever, yet on the surface everyone seems to think that I have it all figured out – a degree, a prestigious career at the #1 children’s hospital in the world, an amazing boyfriend, a hand in a start-up, non-profit that already has the support of celebrities. And on paper, it does not seem that I could possibly feel this lost. But I do. And my yearning to travel, to see the whole WORLD, is made worse by the fact that I skipped out on my opportunity to do the “responsible” thing and start my career (a job which I have no interest in doing, but is prestigious and a wonder how a college graduate got it- which makes it so much harder to explain why I want to give it up, and no one would understand.) After starting my career, my boyfriend gets the opportunity to continue his professional soccer career in Poland. It was as if the universe/God was telling me that I made the mistake of settling when other people (boyfriend) are living out their dreams and passions and traveling. I cannot figure out how to have all of this. I am sure you know exactly how this feels. And my “eternal optimism” is slowly, and quickly-at the same time, breaking down. I feel like I failed myself, and I failed the world. I feel like I am trapped in a ditch, so appreciative of all that I have, but ready to give it up all up just to take a risk. I feel like I’m at the bottom of this ditch, being watched by my close, Italian family who would be devastated if I left, and all of the people in my life who have told me that I need to stop “worrying” and just take it “one step at a time.” I do not take things 1 step at a time… I take one leap at a time because I never have, and never want to have any regrets. I truly believe life is a gift. I have seen awful things in my short life, and situations that have made me grow as an even more compassionate person. I battle with what is responsible, what is right, and what I feel. Everyday. I want to take a risk, but I need to find that risk. I have SO many passions, and I am one of those people who can feel passionate/interested in almost anything. I strive to be the best at everything I do, and I strive to literally help and understand EVERYONE (the human experience, as I like to call it.) I am just… lost.

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