I’m Afraid of What I Want

Man, is it easy to be lazy. I’m writing this blog post from my bed, where I have been for the past two hours. What have I done during those two hours? Nothing. Except read some trashy blogs and poke around Facebook for awhile. My brother is across the room watching YouTube videos on his phone – I think he’s been stagnant even longer than I have. We are such a fun bunch, huh?

I set a goal for myself this morning that during my free time this afternoon I was going to spend real time thinking about what I want. Like, what kind of life I want to be living, what kinds of people and things I want around me, what I want to be doing…the big “what do I want”s.

And yet, I have done nothing but click through page after page of the internet.

I don’t know why it’s been so hard for me to think in terms of the bigger picture lately. I think I’m scared of it, but I’m not sure what to do about it. Every time I make a decision, I question whether I really want to follow through – and ultimately I never answer my own question. Instead, I distract myself until the decision stresses me out, and then I make up my mind in a state of panic and refuse to let myself back out of whatever choice I’ve made.

I think that’s the way I’ve always been with school. The only reason I decided to go to the school I chose was because it was the “best” school that would have me. It was a decision based on panic and disappointment rather than logic. But once I had made my choice, even in the darkest of times, I never really let myself consider the possibility of changing my mind. Sure, I thought and talked about transferring a few times, but I always knew in the core of my being that I wasn’t going to follow through. I made my bed when I accepted that offer in 2010, and I would forever lie in it. Even though I began to question that decision every single day.

It’s the same now. I’ve made the decision to go back, and I’m throwing myself into it 100%, but I am riddled with doubt and panic. It may be that it’s simply a normal part of life, or it may be that I’m not trusting myself. But I can’t help but think that once again, I am making a choice solely based on fear. Fear of change. Fear of moving in an unfamiliar direction. Fear of disappointment.

I’m afraid of everything. Of realizing my potential, of not realizing my potential. Of changing, of remaining the same. Of people, of being alone. One paradox after another. I’m too afraid to die, but I’m too afraid to really live, either.

Ultimately, I’m afraid of what I want. What if what I want doesn’t line up with what I “should” (GODDAMN THOSE SHOULDS) be doing? What if what I want is unattainable? What if I realize that what I want scares me more than not knowing what I want?

My bigger picture has ugly erase marks all over it where I’ve tried to start over, but I always just redraw the lines exactly where they were because it’s easier. I don’t want to draw new lines and have those be wrong too and have to erase again.

My bigger picture is more petrifying than anything else in my life.

But it’s so important.

Next time I’m going to shelve the digital tools and pick up a pen and paper. I’m going to put on my headphones. I’m not going to let myself get distracted by blogs or wall posts or iTunes. I’m going to force myself to draw my bigger picture. On a clean sheet of paper. No erase marks. Just me. Just what I want.

And right now I’m going to get out of bed and go see a beautifully technical piece of theater with my brother and geek out over the lighting design. Because right now that sounds pretty good.


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