Monday, March 31, 2014

Life Is What Happens To You While You're Busy Making Other Plans

The thing about growing up is that it comes with responsibility. That responsibility often requires a re-alignment of priorities and it is with that in mind that I begin this post.

December feels like an age ago. Most of 2013 seems to have passed me by in a blur of excitement, friendship, heart-break and grand realisations. I guess most years pass by like that though, I'm not yet sure whether that's a mark of youth or if that's life. I'll touch on it again in twenty years time and let you all know. What does stand out about the 2013 that was for me though, is the way in which I chose to spend it and the fact that I was able to choose to spend it. 

2013 was my first full year out of high school. The first year that I was not bound to an educational system and was left to roam freely through the world of adulthood. It was utterly terrifying. In January of 2013 I was not where I wanted to be, I had no idea how to get to where I wanted to be and I was becoming increasingly frustrated with a system that seemed to be geared against anyone without the fortune of a sizeable bank account.

With a few thousand dollars in the bank and an extremely generous offer of help from my father, I decided that my best option was to return to Wisconsin on a visitor visa for 6 months and essentially see what would happen. It was largely an experiment to see whether it was still a place I wanted to be and to enable me to make further plans accordingly. 

Ultimately the experience I had confirmed that the Midwest is my second home and I will always feel that there is a place there for me. It very much confirmed in my mind that New Zealand is a fantastic place to have grown up but that it is a place I feel I must leave. 

In early 2014 I find myself in many of the same predicaments as early 2013 but much better equipped to deal with those predicaments. I also find myself in possession of something integral that I lacked in 2013, a sense of direction as to what I want to do with my life.

I write this post from my bed in Wellington, New Zealand, while sick with a particularly nasty head cold and after a day of battling a migraine. I am extremely grateful to have had this day of rest and the motivation to use some of it to write. This is not where I want to be but it is where I have to be right now in order to end up where I want to be.

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. A few months ago, I had planned to freeze my ass off in a cold Wisconsin winter while attending Madison Media Institute, studying towards an Associate Degree in Video and Motion Graphics. Currently I find myself working as a construction labourer in the city I grew up in, saving towards my dream. I am 20 years old, if there's one thing I do have in abundance, it's time for dream-chasing. 

In the mean time I'll keep my rituals which keep me sane (a few beers in town with friends on thursdays, $2 towards gambling on fridays, sleep half the day away on saturdays), keep doing the things I love (writing, making music, making youtube videos, performing) and keep working towards my dream. There are a lot of things in my life that I can't control but if I keep doing these things, the one thing I can count on is that I'll stay upbeat and that's all that really matters in life anyways, following your heart and keeping a smile on your face.

I'll leave you all with a quote that resonates deeply within me and has for as long as I can remember, "I'm far from what I once was but not yet what I am going to be."

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