Tuesday, January 26, 2016

What if the Vision You Had For Yourself as a Teenager Was Real?

The lake, an early summer morning.
Hi everyone! I hope you are doing well. I apologize for the inconsistent posting schedule lately. I know it must have been strange to have no posts for six months, and suddenly, it's three in a month. Yikes! Get a schedule, girl! But, I am experimenting to see how often I can squeeze in some writing, in between my crazy work schedule and everything else that needs to be done.
It's hard to do it all, as we all know.

My topic today is about discovering who I am, and who I have always been, underneath career titles and official names. I hope that some part of it might resonate with you, too. Or someone you know, who still grapples with "what am I here for?"

I sit in my truck, 11:00 at night, Christian music blaring on the radio. I stare out at the lake, covered by soft mist from the warm air pressure coming in from the South. Every song fits my thoughts, like the radio is a direct message from God himself. And I see it. 
The little balcony overlooking the lake at night.
A vision of what my life is meant to be. Surely being this tired and exhausted all of the time ... is not it! Is this all I am meant to be? No ... surely not!

I have been binge reading the blog and material from Marianne Cantwell at the Free Range Human, and it is starting to click. What I am reading, is starting to connect with my life, in a very personal way. 
And I know I must write it down. I search my purse for paper, and find a photocopy of receipts I copied for school. These are the only paper on the premises, and I must capture this vision before it goes away, lost forever in the endless mess of my everyday life. 

So I write:
I am a writer.  It is what makes my heart sing. It was who I was before I ever stood at the front of a class, and introduced myself as the teacher. It is who I am in the quiet moments: observing, taking notes, noticing details. I recall:
  •  longing to write at every job I ever had, even a memo, or an e-mail. Just let me form words. 
  •  taking a job in advertising sales at the weekly newspaper, just so I could be around the writers. 
  • writing the entrance exam to journalism school at 3:00 in the morning, on a couple of envelopes, transferred quickly unto paper a couple of hours before the deadline, and getting in.
  •  intense poetry at nineteen, long since lost but snippets still floating in my head.

 I see a vision of my life, and it is writing, and alway has been. I get out of the truck and take some pictures of the soft snow coming down on the lake. It is perfectly still and the lake stretches out for miles and miles. 
The lake in the light, in the fall. 

I write more, with excitement, seeing my vision, possible, do-able. I see that doing what I am is not the risk. What's risky is not doing what I am. Reaching my deathbed and regretting the undone. How utter depressing and hopeless! 

I am so inspired by the message from Ms. Cantwell. Her main message, as I understand it, is about living a life that is based primarily on who you are. Her words have been resonating with me, and I see it for myself. It is something I have been learning for a long time, but something is just clicking in a different way. My actions need to become who I am ... no matter what ... 
The song on the radio, Jason Gray sings "He made you to glow in the dark."  The song confirms this truth deep in my soul. He loves me, and wants me to be who he created me to be. That is not just wishful thinking -- that is the truth. 

I get back back in the truck and head home to a husband who loves me, to our quiet little house in the woods. It feels right. I feel hope.

Now, back to you. Does any of this resonate with you? Have you had any of my same struggles? If so, let me just ask you a couple of questions. What makes your heart sing? Who are you, who have you always been, through all your jobs? Through all your heartbreaks and silly moments? Like the proverbial girl next door, maybe it has been right there along. Maybe you have just neglected to see it. 

What if you dared to believe that that calm peaceful feeling you get when you do that one thing, is real? That the vision you had for yourself as a teenager, but gave up when life demanded more "practical decisions" was the truth? Was you? What if that is exactly what you should be doing. And that that should is way more real than the "should get a good job that pays the bills, no matter if it interests me or not," and "should stick with something I hate, because after all, I'm too old to change now." What if? Think about it; kick it around, and let me know what you think. 

For more reading on this topic, I very highly recommend Ms. Cantwell's blog, and book. I have now downloaded the sample on my computer, and when I have book money in the budget, will be buying the rest. It's good stuff.  

I wrote another post about following your passions, and you can also read an encouraging poem about overcoming depression that I wrote a while back.

Thanks for reading. I hope you found this message encouraging. If you would like to stay in regular contact, please sign up for my emails, and/or join the Facebook page for posts about life lessons, nature, faith, and the simple life. Please, please, please leave a comment! Even if you totally disagree with what I said ... I don't mind! Just talk! 

Love Sharilee. Hey thanks so much for reading. I would love to hear your comments and input in the space below. Also, if you like what you are reading, sign up through my Facebook page. or receive posts by e-mail byjoining here


  1. Always follow your dreams I truly beleive you found who you are now go get it

  2. Your post touched me, Sharilee. I've been struggling to find myself even at the age of 45. Thank you for showing me the light :)

  3. Carrie, I am so glad that this post touched you! Have a wonderful evening.

  4. Powerful words, Sharilee, and an encouraging message indeed. I think we are unfolding our understanding of "self," rediscovering who the child in us knew she was, what the teenager saw but the adult lost along the way in the "mess of life." Thank you for posting this.

  5. Thanks so much for stopping by, Michelle. It's always nice to meet a new reader. I love your point that our understanding of self is always unfolding. And so true that we often forget who we really are with the pressures of adolescence and then of earning a living in the world. Thanks for your insightful comment.

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