I am slowly learning how to adjust to this very awkward phase of my life.
I think it is a beautiful reality that we as humans, similarly to all living things, never stop growing and evolving. It’s like just when I felt I had figured myself out it was like–BAM–new person. And I feel like it’s because I’ve been so dedicated the last two years or so to really learning to love and embrace all of me that I sometimes get frustrated feeling like I’m right back to square one, figuring myself and the world out. I’m realizing more and more that I need to not only love and accept the me of the past, but I need to love the me that shows up each day, while also loving the me I am constantly sprouting towards. I’m unpredictable, I’m a shape shifter, I adapt and I move between chapters as I please with a sense of ease and acceptance of the uncertainty that lies ahead. But the idea of embracing uncertainty is still something that challenges me day to day, and from talking to many of my friends–I’m not alone.
SZA is an artist that’s defined so many periods of my early adulthood: love, heartbreak, self-discovery, but something that I love so deeply about this Scorpio queen is that she sheds light on the really awkward and undesirable times of her 20s, accepting that she didn’t have a damn clue about what was happening around her, and couldn’t really have much control over it.
"Good luck on these 20 somethings,
God bless these 20 somethings…
Praying my 20 somethings won’t end,
hoping to keep the rest of my friends,
praying the 20 somethings don’t kill me.”
-SZA, 20 Something
Listening to that song now just hits differently. I’ve been realizing that we cling on to this idea of youthfulness in our 20s while we realize:
1. just how unprepared we are to have the fun we couldn’t afford before, with...
2. the time we never got to have during college and our adolescence, yet...
3. physically living several hours and work schedules away from the people we would like to spend it with.
You’re excited for the freedom from your parents, but constantly are reminded of just how much they did for you and how much you have to still figure out.
Passing by beautiful reminders in West Hollywood. I love LA!
Though I’m ranting, I know that I’m not alone. I know that so many of my friends are feeling the exact confusion, and maybe even embarrassment of the "in-between", "20-somethings" stage of life that was somewhat like we expected, but is also the furthest thing from our expectations. I think what makes it all the more frustrating is that so many of us are realizing that life we mapped out for ourselves may still not bring us that feeling of security and happiness we desire. We can check off as many boxes of accomplishments and milestones that we like, but it may not ever quite feel like enough. Like, this is not what the college pamphlets told me!
But this just makes me believe that this happens to a lot of us because our purpose is not to live for checkpoints, to paint a dream life so vivid and rigid that we feel like we fail if we don’t stay on course. Maybe uncertainty is a good thing, and maybe not having it all together is what makes us more human. Uncertainty can be your breakthrough or your breakdown, and let me tell you I’ve experienced both. I’m learning and making an effort each day to fill my mind, my body, and my spirit with love and abundance. Because I believe it’s the only fair “combat” I have in achieving a life of fulfillment and peace. If I practice loving myself, I’m practicing loving the journey, and I can find peace with all that happens around me. If I choose to “love forward” like the great bell hooks advises in All About Love: New Visions, I will begin to believe that it is what I deserve, it’s what I can contribute to the world everyday. I want my world to be a reflection of me, not me of it, and by choosing to live in love, loving ourselves and the world around us, we reject fear. Fear is, “...the primary force upholding structures of domination,” bell hooks advises. And for the Bible scripture readers, “God did not give us the spirit of fear, but of power, love and sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:6-7).
Regardless of the source, the message remains. We as individuals are powerful, loving, capable beings for all that enters our paths. We cannot allow uncertainty and fear of the unknown to cloud our ability to live in the present and appreciate each moment, because each stone, each crack, each pivot is apart of our walk of life.
Taken in November in Bilbao, Spain after I finished my first go-round of reading this incredible piece of work. If you don't know...
READ IT NOW!
In Deepak Chopra’s: 7 Spiritual Laws of Success he talks a lot about the concept of uncertainty and encourages us to surrender to it. He says, “The goal when facing uncertainty is to not only surrender but also to be love. If you are attempting to think and act as love itself (or at least have that as a goal), then you cannot help but trust the Universe. Love is okay with all outcomes. Love always finds a way to be itself no matter what is happening. Love will help if things go wrong. Love shares if things are lost. Love grows new channels. Love opens novel paths.”
I’m not suggesting we choose to do nothing when facing friction in life, but by accepting and embodying a “love ethic”, the weight of expectation, the anxiety of failure, the self-deprecation of guilt, suddenly turns into a sensation of freedom.
Obviously everything that I’m theorizing and referencing is much easier said than done. But what if we worked to embody this just bit by bit everyday? What if, instead of stressing over our master plans that we're unsure of how it will come to be, we accept each path as an approximate destination where we are taking a scenic route? I always joke about my life being a movie, but the more I practice mindfulness and sit with my own thoughts, the more I really believe that I’m both directing and starring in my own film. I am allowing the
artistry my hiccups of life to curate and detail my life’s intricate plot line. What a work of art it already is, and just how legendary it will be.
Watching the sunset at Venice Beach is one of my favorite ways to bid the sun farewell