To the Person Who Feels Lost
To the Person Who Feels Lost:
While our society has coined the phrase “How are you doing?” as a greeting more than a question, the people in my life want more than just “Fine.”
So I’ve been answering like this:
Picture a wooden boat floating in a lake. The boat has no oars or motor so it simply floats with the subtle motion of the the water beneath it. Now imagine you are in this boat, surrounded by such thick fog that you cannot see more than a couple inches on either side of you. You’re completely unaware if it’s night or day and even less aware of what direction your headed in (if any). For all you know you could be floating in a circle, having gone nowhere, or you’re floating in a ridiculously straight line. So you sit and wait. For what? You’re not sure. The only other option is to throw yourself overboard but that doesn’t seem quite appealing yet, so you remain seated. And continue to wait for a change.
Now you don’t need to go and analyze the pieces of my angsty emotions—I have done plenty for the both of us, equal parts logic and delirium. The fog is a metaphor for the unknown, the whole scene is a metaphor for feeling lost, I’ve written the beginning of a horror film—think what you will, this is just the best way I’ve found to describe how I feel to others in a way that they can understand.
Or maybe it’s the only way that I can. It’s hard to understand a feeling that actually has the word ‘unknown’ in its definition and even harder to explain, so when I picture this image it gives me a shallow comfort knowing I can at least picture it even if I can’t understand it.
I wish I had something better to tell you than I’m in the same boat as you (literally). But I don’t really.
The only solution I see to feeling lost is to find your purpose, your North star, or basically the reason for why you do what you do. And to feel in some capacity that you are working towards, contributing to, or aligning with your purpose on a daily basis.
This sounds freaking wonderful and wholesome but the issue I have with this one is that I don’t know what my purpose is. If you do, then kudos. Please throw yourself a party and send me the bill.
But if you’re like me and don’t know what your purpose is yet then maybe this idea will be more to your liking: Maybe we are indefinitely lost (please put your middle finger down).
Whether it be physically or internally, we are constantly changing. Due to this phenomenon we will have to get reacquainted with ourselves at least a handful of times in our lives. We change our looks, our beliefs, the way we talk, and practically everything except what we’re made up of on the inside (over 50% water). So if we are constantly changing, then maybe we’re constantly lost. Because as soon as we feel as though we’ve gotten a grip on our new reality, we’re already in the process of changing.
I’m sure it was not the answer you were looking for, but if we can just make being lost the new normal and feeling found the abnormal, then maybe we can stop feeling so sh*tty about it. And ourselves.
Then the question is no longer if you are lost or not, but if you are happy or not?