I wander through weekends with lingering questions in the back of my mind. Will there ever be a stretch of time in life when life feels effortless? Will the questions ever come with clear cut answers?
I imagine what “arriving” looks like, and it is ambiguous at best. When Mondays roll through, I am hit with the reality of time passing.
I do not have time to look back at my weekend because I must look ahead in order to keep going.
At some point during the week, I will fail at something because I am human. Questions about my purpose in life rise to the top of my mind like cream does to milk.
This recurring existential crisis grows wearisome.
My frustrations bubble over and I speak about it with friends and family. Often I am not alone in my confusion; when advice comes, it is well-meaning and sometimes motivating.
I am appreciative of the support and camaraderie I have found in all of this.
But amidst my pontificating and conversing, there is deep part of myself that has reached a conclusion already, which is that life is a grueling journey, and rare will be the moment with flat, solid ground and sweeping views. As sojourners, I believe we will spend much of our time trudging up steep hills, and falling often, only to meet a cliff face with no way around it.
It will then be up to us to find another route, to try to free climb, or to set up camp.
It will be confusing. We may spend days looking around trying to figure out the route we want to take: into the cave, up the mountain, along the river, to the ocean; and it will rarely be easy finding the way. Thankfully, each step will seem like a victory because we’ve had to fight for it; each companion will be precious because they will serve as our motivation and encouragement to keep going; and each outlook will be a gift because we will see how far we’ve come.
In it all, we might just find that the purpose of living is to keep going, keep trudging, and let failure be a friend rather than a foe.
As M.L. King once prolifically charged, “If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
This weekend I visited my hometown with a childhood friend and my roommate. We were blessed with beautiful weather and enough loving family members to hug and feed us for an eternity.