This morning is particularly different from the ones prior. I didn’t curse my alarm clock. I didn’t snooze two times before willing myself out of bed to beat the sunrise. I got up with ease.
For some reason, I woke up completely clearheaded. The clarity is alarming. As I lay in bed reading an email on my phone, I realized one thing more than ever: in a few weeks, I will be done with the easy part and beginning a whole new chapter in my life.
And unlike all the other chapters I’ve begun, this is the one time where the carpet has been snatched from under my feet and I’ve been literally sitting on the floor of my apartment wondering, “What the heck am I going to do with my life?”
It was refreshing at first, enumerating many possibilities and thinking of the biggest dreams. I know that I could attain virtually anything I set my mind to.
Attorney? Give me 3 years.
Doctorate of Philosophy? Give me 4 more.
A better person? Umm, let me get back to you on that.
But that’s not what I’m writing about. No, I’m not typing out some manifesto of me trading in the corporate ladder climb for a life of humble existence. I was never trying to go corporate anyway.
The past few months have only confirmed in me something I realized years ago: I don’t want be trapped in a degree program making connections with people I have nothing in common with in the name of putting a few letters at the end of my name. I don’t want to keep hopping on planes not knowing if it will land, or if I’ll see my family again. I don’t want to keep doing what I’ve been doing these past few years, these blessing that I have been given.
But, after talking with my mother yesterday, I realized that I have no idea what I want to do. And the only career that I have a little passion about (becoming a school teacher) I’m starting to wonder if I’ll even get a job in. Nevertheless, I need a job. I need to be settled. My heart has been longing for some sense of permanency for a while now. It’s time I address it.
It’s so true, you know, how only Allah (God) has knowledge of the unseen. And now, I’m just riding on faith. And while I sometimes wish I could see into the next few months, it gives me more comfort to know that I plan, and Allah plans. And the Best of planners is Allah (3:54).
As I laid down listening to the birds chirping in the dark of the dawn, it occured to me the obvious: no matter where I am in the world, the birds chirp. The rain cools my heart. The sun rises, the sun sets. So what am I so afraid of? For me, I know that one of my tests in this life is to know and believe that achieving my plans of education or travel is not difficult. I’ve done it and could do it all over again 10 times better. No. The difficult part is being content with what I have in front of me, even when I feel completely helpless.
I’ve felt helpless before. Out of control. Like everything I’ve built is just completely trashed. I moved on. I applied myself to get out of the situation.
Now, I’m not as helpless. I’ve achieved what I set out to achieve. I’d like to think that my smile got wider and my heart bigger in the process.
“You make a hundred resolutions to journey somewhere, but He draws you somewhere else.” -Rumi