Over the past few months we've been through a lot of transition--- a move away from our comfort zone and friends to a new state, new jobs, the hope of a new pregnancy and the loss of that pregnancy, and my attempt to go half-time with Paper Menagerie just as the nation's economy tanked.
This is not a post with the intention to whine. In fact, I'm quite proud of the way Billy and I have dealt with these adjustments, and I'm also proud of the fact that usually I'm a worrier, a person who operates and makes choices based on practicality and fear. I like a plan, and I like to feel that that plan is failproof. But I have not let myself give into all that this time . . . yet. And I'm trying not to.
All these things have been kicking around in my head a lot lately, and despite the fact that I'm proud and hopeful, I also give into frustration and depression sometimes. Wandering around at the library, I was drawn to the book What Now? by Ann Patchett. This was originally a commencement speech that Patchett delivered as Sarah Lawrence, and I admit, I'm sort of a sucker for those sorts of things.
But what really resonated with me what the post-college journey that Patchett described: the transition from being so darn sure about everything, to floundering in waitressing jobs, to going back to graduate school for lack of a better answer, to the acceptance of being less sure but happy in your travels. It's a journey I can relate to and am trying to be better about accepting.
A quick excerpt, and not even the best part:
Every choice lays down a trail of bread crumbs, so that when you look behind you there appears to be a very clear path that points straight to the place where you stand. But when you look ahead there isn't a bread crumb in sight--- there are just a few shrubs, a bunch of trees, a handful of skittish woodland creatures. You glance from left to right and find no indication of where you're supposed to go. And so you stand there, sniffing the wind, looking for directional clues in the growth patterns of moss, and you think What now?