The other day, I was clearing some photos and videos off of my phone. I found so many memories from my time in the classroom and it made me panic. It hit me that I made this giant decision to walk away from my career, and I wondered if it was the right one. I struggle with change, and fear of change has held me back in many areas of my life. I like to settle into a routine and stay there no matter how unhappy I am.
When I think about change and the discomfort that comes with it, it leads me to a bigger question. What would happen if I never changed? What if I never pushed through the discomfort of change in my life? Would I still be the same person I was when I was 18? Would I be stuck in a job that stressed me out and stole my joy? Would I be clinging to old relationships? Would I have experienced any of the adventures I've been so lucky to have in my life?
I don't know the answers to those questions, but I do know that I used to belong in a lot of places where I just don't fit anymore - art school, at the front of a classroom, in a small town hours away from my family, in certain friendships and relationships, etc. The fact of the matter is that we all evolve and change over time. If we don't, what kind of life are we living?
We can't run away from change, and we also can't shrink ourselves to fit in places we used to belong. We have to keep pushing forward and sitting with the discomfort.
If I hadn't said yes to change a year ago, I wouldn't have any of the things that bring me so much joy now - my home, the wide open spaces that surround me here, the animals I get to help care for, a new job that doesn't stress me out, and the ability to contribute to a small part of the legacy my husband's family has been building for nearly 100 years.
Don't shrink yourself to fit into places that used to be right for you. Don't feel bad about making the choice to walk away. I truly believe that when we decide to do what makes us happy and allow ourselves to change and grow things start falling into place.