18 March 2008

Post-Vacation Thoughts

After 7 glorious, perfect, sunny, warm days, I've finally accepted that I am back in my "real" life.  
Not that I'm happy about that, but I'm trying to be realistic here.  I'm stuck here until at least May, so I should get my head out of the clouds for the next 6 weeks.  Or something like that.

As is expected, I came up with so many new blog posts on the cruise (note:  I forgot my journal and therefore had to make lots of notes on the back of receipts...my purse is a total mess!).  There's something about sitting on the beach, looking at clear blue skies that makes me reflect on so many different things, but as always, my main thought is always about how I want to run away and live a life-less-ordinary.  I find myself dreaming of living on an island, working within the local community, and becoming part of it.  Of becoming part of something new.  It's thrilling (and admittedly terrifying) to imagine myself so completely outside of my comfort zone and outside of everything I know...and then becoming part of it.  

And then our plane landed in Indiana and I had to come back down to earth.

And now, I find myself torn in between an interesting dynamic:  How I do not sell myself short and embrace LIFE and all those experiences I want to have and still remain "responsible," "mature," and down-to-earth??? 

Right now, I don't know the answer.  I know that if I moved outside the U.S., I would miss my family greatly and would probably be more homesick that I want to admit.  Not to mention that my dear, dear grandparents are 92 years old and in failing health.  And I don't want to take the Bar and then a) not need the certification or b) have to take it again in a few years.  And what would I do for a career?  Can I be an attorney in a foreign country?  Do I even want to be an attorney???  See, lots of questions.  

But then there are the benefits:  new experiences, larger cultural perspective (and the sundry benefits that come with), mastering a new language, "diverse" friend set, reasons to travel back, probably stands out on an American resume, and most importantly, a life less ordinary.  And  I mean less ordinary in the sense that I have a desire to challenge myself to do new things, NOT because I want to brag to my friends/co-workers that I've done something "different."

(By the way, I think most people go through this thought process in their early 20's.  Since I am just now figuring myself, I am going through this in my mid-twenties.  Whatever)

The entire point of this rambling is that my little va-cay left me wanting more.  More adventure, more sunshine and 90 degree weather, and more LIFE.  I want to get out there and live it, and I'm tired of letting things like law school and the Bar and "I should (fill in the blank)" keep me from doing that.

One of my favorite movies sums it up best:  "Either get busy living, or get busy dying."


heather said...

Katie, my love...

It sounds like your vacation was lovely. There really is no place on earth like the Caribbean countries for clearing your head and changing your perspective.

I always worry for you that you think you should have your life figured out by now. I hate to go all Yoda on you, but I have certainly learned that life is about adapting to the curveballs that are thrown your way. Very few of us get to live by the plans we set out for ourselves, whether these plans involve marriage, career, education, or other goals. Learning to take what comes and adjusting your expectations to the situation at hand -- these are the lessons of your mid to late twenties that you will carry with you for the rest of your days.

Don't get me wrong, I'm neither advising you to settle nor to throw out your plans. Just remember that each of us has a unique course to take in life, and it's often not what family, friends, colleagues or professors tell us it should be.

Have faith in yourself, your vision of the future, and your dreams. With a lot of hard work, and a little luck, you will be fine!!


Katie said...

i love you, heather!!!!!!

Jessica said...

I totally know where you're coming from!

(I'm a sorority sister of Heathers, BTW)

I returned from a Caribbean cruise on March 3rd..and while on vacation, I had many of the same thoughts you did.

There's something about beautiful green blue water to help refocus your life, eh?