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.