I was trying to figure my life out today. Simple! Not really. I have noticed my life is random. I get nothing done on some days and little done on others. I am easily distracted and easily frustrated. So I decided to think things through in a journal and see if there is a pattern or if I can figure out when it started. It hasn’t always been this way.
Random, but not unproductive
I never made a career choice, so my work life has always been random. My parenting was definitely without guidance, and since I was a stepparent, it was even more confused than orderly. But I remember my mom telling me I accomplished more in any given day than anyone she knew. So even though it seemed I had no order to what I was doing, I got a lot done.
So, What Happened
What happened? That’s what I wanted to figure out. I wondered when did it start? I think it began in 2009, the day my husband died. The day nothing made sense anymore. The moment in time when I decided nothing mattered anymore. My heart went numb, and the world was spinning around me. For a while, everyone is happy to help. The pastor, the funeral director and others involved in the final arrangements. My husband had directed me on some of the things I needed to do so I would have money to continue.
Random, Random, Random
What I discovered as a widow were numbness and a foggy mind. I would have gladly sat down and just stared for hours at nothing or TV without a single thought. I knew I should do something so I decided to do the next important thing. Put one foot in front of the other and do something that should get done and then just do the next thing. Friends and family came to visit at random times, or they asked me for breakfast or some other meal. Mostly I just did the next task, and I was not sure what that next thing might be.
There were random times I missed my husband so much I couldn’t do anything but cry. Or I would be so scared about my uncertain future I felt paralyzed. To keep from feeling so alone when I ate, I would often stand at the kitchen counter or in front of the computer. Meals were unplanned and random. At one point I was sure I was going insane. At unusual times I would smell my husband’s smell, and one time I smelled cologne. (All explainable upon further research)
Still Random After All These Years
Somehow, after nine years, I still have not become intentional in my activities. Since those days I have always been doing the next thing. Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” When I had no sense of purpose or plan, I dried up productively. I perished because I had no vision of what I wanted or where I was going. I had made schedules for myself but without an idea of what I wanted or what I hoped to accomplish I would give up. I would go back to just doing the next urgent thing, and if nothing was compelling, I randomly did what I wanted.
Today, after journaling it through and finding the next step I chose a purpose for myself. As a writer, I need to find my “brand.” I need to know what I stand for. Even in writing these blog posts….which have been pretty random in topic and message, I need to stand for something. What is that bumper sticker? If you don’t know what you stand for, you’ll fall for anything. Yep. I also read that what we want most, if we admit it, is to know our identity. We want to know what we stand for. Of course, this is a process, and it’s a process I needed to go through a long time ago, but didn’t understand the problem, leave alone think to find an answer.
I may have said this before, but at the funeral dinner one of my friends asked me, “What are you going to do now?” I said I was going to find out who Sherry is without my husband, but somewhere I got lost. In the book, I am working on, and below I have posted some of the first chapters, Sydney is a widow with the same problem., She hasn’t figured out that her life can quickly become random if she doesn’t catch a vision of who she is and how her purpose has changed.
I hope you will continue to join me on this journey and find your purpose and vision too.