I purchased a one way ticket to Paris for September 18. I wanted to live there for a few years and eventually come back to Washington DC, or who knows where? I had a little bit of money and the possibility of under the table employment. Didn’t have a place to stay though. Some friends in the area but no one I felt too comfortable asking to put me up for a long time.
And, I had received my international MBA degree.
The quest to go to Paris really didn’t have a rational basis. There were many rationalizations, and I thought it might finally be the crazy dream I’d been searching for to give meaning to my life, or at least reassure me I’d see and do all I wanted before I died. And I had never felt as comfortable as I had in Paris-an outsider with no hope of fitting in, but someone who could forge my own life on my own terms in one of the most beautiful cities on earth.
And then I had a conversation with a friend. She said living in America could be cool too, save your money first, and have a job lined up before you get there. She said I could have everything I had in Paris, and I didn’t have to bankrupt myself to get there.
So I stayed.
I halfheartedly canceled my ticket but hoped to reschedule. I didn’t. Ironically I got an interview with a company out there- but the soonest I could possibly start that job would be in January, and it wouldn’t pay much. Definitely not enough for me to start paying my loans back and have any pocket change at all.
So I stayed.
And I actually feel good about it. I think the only place I might be able to do the work I really want to do is DC. It could be- not sure, but probably.
And I have a sense of what kind of work that is.
And o by the way, I want to get a doctorate there in a few years. Adn I want to go back to plan A of being a college professor, and not stress so much about it not being a “real job.”
So now I’ve been chilling at home for about a month. It’s actually not so bad. I’ve really enjoyed the time with my family and the old friends who are still in America. It’s not Paris, but I’m not miserable either.
I went through a tough time, depression caused by myself, when I was in b school. I had and still have so many existential questions, so much frustrations with the injustices and heartaches of the world, and still dont’ really know what I’m doing.
But guess what? I’m ok. Things did’t go according to plan, I didn’t get what I want, and I’m still here. No big. I’m actually excited about the next step, and going to give it some time on the whole job search thing. I’m feeling more whole and complete in myself, and I think that is half the battle. I know or at least think I know what I want. I’m still trying to integrate all aspects of myself and my thinking, but it’s a process. I know I’d be happy in DC. I could be happy in many other places.
And I’m ready to make a bit of a commitment, and try a different sort of wandering. Maybe DC will be the city I never leave. Maybe I’ll meet the guy that never goes away. Maybe I’ll get dusty in the minutiae of everyday life, and life will go on. I’ll grow up, age, get a career track job and stay on that track maybe. Maybe the sailing will be a little smoother from here. I’m surprised to say I’d actually like that, at least for a time.
Because now, I know that there is mystery never far beyond my reach. I know that transformation is a moment away if I need it. I know that life happens, and God’s plans are better than mine.
Love is everywhere.