Mycah Roark- The Collegiate Staff
When posed with the question “who are we” I really didn’t know what to write. I thought I could write about myself, personal narrative, how I’ve suffered through depression and all that kind of crap. The more I thought about it, the more I had no idea what I could write, I don’t know who I am, how can I say who we are as a society if I don’t even know who I am. There’s so much pressure on people – teens, young adults, high school students, everyone – to know who we are, and who we’re going to become, there’s so much pressure to have your crap together and yet I don’t.
I’m 21 years old, I finally have given up and decided I don’t know who I am. And when I say I don’t know who I am, I don’t mean like gender related, but more life related. I have no idea what I am going to be when I grow up. When I was 5, I was going to be a teacher, and I carried that plan until I got to college. Then college happened and I thought I would be a counselor or social worker, and then it was marketing and advertising, all in the span of a year. In one year I changed my future five times. And now, this being my third year of college, I have flat out said I don’t know.
It sucks not knowing who you are or what you’re going to do next. It sucks not being able to predict the future and saying, “I’m going to go into this and I’m going to be so successful, I’m going to work here.” It sucks not knowing. It sucks. I wish there was a better word for how it feels, but I can’t seem to find one, one that embodies all the emotions of making a choice and running with it, really making no choice and living with it. Sometimes I’m jealous of the kids whose parents have it all figured out for them, they have their school chosen, their spouse, job, money, everything, and mine have decided to support me wherever I go. Thanks, mom and dad, real helpful. But in all reality, it’s probably the best thing they could do for me. So thank you mom and dad, really, thank you, I need to figure this out on my own.
I think the worst part about not knowing what you’re going to go into for a job, is the pressure you feel. Most of the time the pressure I feel is from myself, I go onto Facebook and compare my life to all my “friends” and all I can see is that they are doing what they feel like they should do, going to school, studying for their future, and I’m here and taking classes from all over the spectrum for “fun.” Yeah that’s what I tell people, I’m taking four different classes from four different spectrums for fun. In all honesty, I just didn’t know what to take, so I took what I thought I could go into. And now I have run into a problem, I still don’t know what I’m going to do, and now I have more interests than before.
I have always been told that I could do anything, and become anything. So I carry around this idea that no matter what I do, I can do it. And while this is a great thought to have, I have placed myself in quite a predicament, I don’t know what I should do with all my can do’s. I could be a great sales person, a writer, photographer, advertiser, whatever I want, but I don’t know what I want. And with that thought I came to a stand still, and I realized something far better than knowing, is the not knowing.
Recently my best friend tried to take her own life, I had become so caught up in myself that I forgot one thing, others. When she told me about her attempt, I was so worried about her that I forgot about myself. I rushed to her side, skipping a class that only meets once a week, hurting my grade, because she was far more important. We took a drive and talked, and I realized what a bad friend I had become. I was so worried about things that I can not change that I forgot to be a person. A person who cares and loves. A person who would drop everything for a friend. As I listened to her talk about her struggles within the past month, I saw she had the same problem I have, she does not know who she is. She got caught in the busyness of life, trying to make others happy, that she forgot to trust in the Lord, just like me.
So what do I mean, that she forgot to trust in the Lord. In all my life, with every stupid thing I have done, from driving like an idiot, to being oblivious to my surroundings, one thing has always remained the same, God. He has always been a part of my life, even when I have chosen to ignore Him. There was a time in my life where I had become so sucked into depression that I created a mask for myself. My mask hid all my true feelings, the self doubt, the lovelessness, loneliness, stress and control issues.
I thought I was doing so good at hiding my mask, I thought that if I covered it with makeup no one would see where it started and ended, but I forgot about God. Then one Saturday at church, God took a makeup whip and let people see where my mask was. I was sitting in the back of my small church, around 80 members, and a member was presenting a blanket she made. God had her making blankets every year for people who needed the encouragement. It started with my pastor who was battling breast cancer, then there was a mom who lost her job, a dad who lost his job, and dad who had medical problems and had 7 kids. In no way did I ever think she would make one for me, I did nothing to desire such a gift of love, and yet she called my name. She said the Lord just wanted me to know that I was loved and cared for, that He had a great purpose for my life, one that I could never imagine.
Now, I know you all want to know what this has to do with not knowing who I am. That blanket sits in my room, I see it every day. Every day I am reminded that I am precious and I have a grander purpose in life than what I can see. Every day I have to choose what I am going to do, am I going to make my decisions by myself, or am I going to let God make them and trust He knows what he is doing.
I get it, you feel like I’m preaching to you, that I trying to shove Jesus down your throat, but that is not my intention. I am a lost soul, one wrong step and I could travel down a road that is filled with thorns and thistles, but because I believe in the Lord, I have bumpers on. I can easily step over my bumpers, but everytime I hit them, it’s the Lord saying “Hey over here, eyes on me,” and right now he’s telling me that I am going to just have to follow him, and wait till this fog leaves, and man is the fog thick.
I have always known that God has a great plan for me, one that will be smooth as a fresh paved road, but I am not there yet.
I get it, you think it’s all been strawberries and roses for me, but no, I have been through things I would never wish upon my worst enemy. As you know suffer with depression, but that’s not all. Rejection follows me like a loyal dog, and right now, I am going through the worst feeling of loneliness I have ever felt. This loneliness is one of the reasons that I struggle so much with knowing who I am. I will be honest with you, I know I matter to the Lord and I know I have a great purpose, but shoot, it sometimes feels like I have been left alone in the arena fighting the Devil by myself.
Even though I don’t know about right now, or tomorrow, or next semester, I know this, that through all things through Christ who strengths me, I can get through today, tomorrow, and next semester. I know that I am not fighting the Devil alone, in fact I don’t have to fight him at all, I just have to let the Lord do all my fighting for me, and he will bare the pain. There is a skit that depicts this perfectly, just Youtube “the everything skit,” without giving it away, and to peak your interest, it shows perfectly my fight with the Devil and how through it all the Lord remains present. I know I started this out being upset and angry that I don’t know my future, and sure I still feel that way, but I know that while my future remains unclear to me, it also remains clear. I have a bright future, with or without money or a job or close friends, I have the Lord as my companion, and I have him besides me fighting and holding my hand all at once.
I write this to encourage, I get what it feels like to only have $7 in your bank account, not knowing what you are going to use to pay bills, buy gas, food, whatever it is for you. I get what it feels like to be overwhelmed with today and not wanting to think about tomorrow. I get it, the pressures of having a job and school and a social life and family, I get the overwhelming feeling of despair and defeat, I understand, and so does the Father.
And I know this is not what you may have expected or wanted, but this is life, this is the great race we are all told of in middle and high school, and you don’t have to go about it alone. So when you feel like the world is on top of you, cry out to the Father, he is your protector and strength, you don’t need a previous relationship with Him. There are no right words to say, you don’t have to recite a prayer or saying, it’s just you and the Father, and all your problems and worries and the best conversation you will ever have. I speak from experience, I have told the Father everything, if it in some way mattered to me, it matters to Him. From missing car keys to the feeling of death, He cares because he created you.
Take it from someone who has had to learn it the hard way more than once, He is worth everything, and if you don’t believe me, just ask him to show himself, he would be more than willing to. Nothing is too small for him, no time is better than the present, and he can’t wait for you to come a calling.
And yes, I still don’t know what I am going to do, I really don’t know who I am. I am young and still figuring things out, I have years to “find myself.” It’s discouraging and tough, but every time I as the Father for help it seems so easy, I forget I don’t get to have control. And I want you to know, there is no rush, you have your whole life to figure out who you are, for some they already know, but for others it takes time. Don’t be discouraged, and if you do get discouraged, just remember that I to am going through this, you are not alone, and you never will be.