So last time I got really personal on here, I admitted about the fact that I was (or am) battling depression. I appreciate everyone who read that because like I said in that blog, it wasn’t just for me – it was for a lot of other people who couldn’t type out their words before it was too late.
In the aftermath of posting that, I’ve learned a lot about myself. That I’m selfless. I’m a tireless worker, regardless of what individuals may see from the outside. That no matter what, I care and now realizing that I’m actually worth a damn here on this planet. At the same time, we face our problems and we strive to be the best person we can be on a regular basis.
I possibly created a stir when I said on my Facebook that I was at a crossroads at life, and not sure which direction to go to because I feel like I have a lot of options and directions to go to right now. I just looked at my life and said, “Is this what’s really there for me right now?” I’m just stuck in the middle of mud, and I don’t know how to get out of that.
I put a lot of pressure on myself to perform on a regular basis. I’m my own worst critic and my own worst enemy because my brain never stops thinking for a minute, and I assume the worst of a situation. Do I handle pressure well? Absolutely. But does it take about three days to just recharge myself? Duh. I’m not a robot like Lebron James.
One of the reasons why I take breaks from work and travel for a couple of days every two to three months is because my job is an emotional roller coaster every single day dealing with customers (I actually know understand why teachers get summers off because man, dealing with people is EXHAUSTING). Like I said above, I put a lot of pressure on myself to show up and perform at the highest level although there are times where I don’t want to.
When my mom and spoke about my depression after she read my blog in early January, we talked about how emotionally drained I was from working every single day from November to late December while taking 18 credits and other things that cause it, and she told me that every couple of months, escape for a bit and make myself happy. It might not work for some, but man, that works for me.
I posted that on my Facebook because I’ve been thinking about what I want in my life – what more can I do while I’m still young enough to do it, while not giving up on my goals, but instead maximizing them even more. Regardless of the multiple paths I take, I’m pretty sure that things will end up being fine, and I’ll get what I want at the end of it.
So what have I been debating my life?
In the last three weeks, I’ve been applying to jobs back out West (the motherland) from Seattle to San Jose because I’m ready to return to the coast that raised me with or without a bachelor’s degree. Is that a risk? Hell yeah it is. So was coming to the east coast (twice), without knowing anybody for school, too. That initial risk of coming to a foreign place without knowing a single soul turned out to be my best decision in my life, which is why I’m comfortable taking another risk, if needed.
I should finish up school considering that I’m about 18 credits short of a degree (literally one semester), and have been saving money from paychecks just to pay for it because that’s the necessary thing to do, although that might be nearly impossible now.
On one hand, I believe finishing out something that I started now is worth it. Like my boy Jake told me on the phone last week when we had a conversation, he said, “why quit when you’ve put in the tears and effort to get to this point,” which is facts. Not many people can say that they’ve done what I’ve done. It’s been a pioneer effort to say the least for myself, and I have become a better person in the long run although others would say differently.
On the other hand, I’ve realized that a piece of paper wouldn’t define me and make me better than the next person. I’d still wake up in the morning being the same Shaun Howard. Would I care about it? I mean, I guess, but I believe more people care about me finishing that up more than I care about finishing it up. In all honesty, I’m striving to leave an impact on the planet more than having a degree, if that makes sense.
When I admitted this to my mom and close friends, they told me that regardless of what I do, that they got my back because at the end of day, it’s all love and they’ll support whatever decisions I choose to make. The way I look at life, no matter what I do, I’ll probably end up with a degree in my hands. It might be later than sooner.
I will say this, though – I’ve learned that I’m not a failure in life regardless of what decisions I make and I’ve realized that life is not a sport. Realizing this has put me at peace with how my life has turned. Life isn’t a race to finish out things and place these unreal expectations on yourself, which is what I’ve done in the past.
People have different paths, and have different opportunities to pursue their own goals. When one door closes, another one with an opportunity opens up – if you choose to find it, which I’m looking to do now.
If you’re one of those people like my grandma (THE GOAT) who prays for me daily (She admitted this to me when she called me while I was working because she has that sense), you can do that. If not, well keep the boy in your thoughts because it’s been about 6 weeks since I’ve been thinking about things like this.
I’m not sure what I’m gonna do, and that’s what makes life scary, but exciting too. Maybe I’ll actually finish school. Maybe I’ll go travel and figure out what’s best for me. Maybe I’ll go back west for good. I don’t know. What I do know is, regardless of what I decide, it’ll be a decision best for myself, and that’s what matters.
My life journey has been interesting to say the least (when this is all said and done, maybe I’ll just write a book) and I’m not done yet. For all I know is – I might be getting started on the journey to my own success.