I’m a firm believer that God has a plan for our lives, which shouldn’t come as a surprise considering my favourite verse is Jeremiah 29:11. During so many rough times in my life I have clung to the fact that God has that perfect plan for me. However, lately that really hasn’t been helping. I’m looking at the hand of cards God has dealt me, and I feel like yelling “deal again, because these cards STINK!”. I don’t want this plan; I want to know Plan B, Plan C…Plan Z!!
I went home a few weeks ago to visit some friends, go on a few job interviews and take care of my parents’ house while they were in Vancouver. While I was there I met up with two of my friends, Heather and Tracy, for lunch at one of our favourite Kanata restaurants. We laughed so hard, and it felt so good! We got caught up on each others lives and went over all the old funny stories from when the three of us used to work together. I felt so good to laugh so much that my sides were hurting and at one point I actually had tears in my eyes! When I got into the car afterwards, I sat for a minute and realized that I couldn’t remember the last time I had laughed that hard. It made me really sad, which I know may sound crazy- who gets sad over being happy?! It made me miss the “old days”, when I was happy with my life and everything was going well.
I don’t deal with change very well- I like everything to stay the same. This past year has been a constant reminder that everything in my life is changing. I feel like I’ve lost all my old church friends- out of the ten of us, I’m the last single, childless one. Whenever I see them I feel like I don’t fit in anymore; their lives and priorities are so different than mine. It’s hard to hear “Lauren, come hear about my great new job/hold my new baby/meet my gorgeous husband” when nothing is working out for me. I know, I sound immature right now!
If I could, I would snap my fingers and go back three years. I was so happy then- I had school, swimming, horses, jobs that I loved, friends that I could laugh with. I feel like I used to have everything, and I’m just sort of sinking right now. My grandmother said that everyone needs to fail at some point in life, but I’m not enjoying it. I got very used to being an honours student, varsity athlete, sports editor for the campus paper…I sat on committees, went to conferences, rescued cats (does anyone remember little Jack?)!!
I went out to the barn when I was home to say hi to some of my barn friends and see some of the horses, and as I walked down the aisles of the barn, it really hit me: everything is different now. The staff is almost completely different- most of us have moved away or gone on to other jobs. I used to know all the clients, and as I read the names on the stall doors I thought “I don’t even know who half these people are, and I’ve only been gone for four months!”. I guess the change had happened slowly over time, but it really hit me that day that people are moving on and growing up.
I think I could handle this better if for me moving on meant moving on to something better. Right now I’m struggling so much with work. My work in Muskoka got extended to the end of October, but it’s only volunteer work. It’s been a great experience (I’ll have to post pictures soon), but I’m ready to figure out what’s next. I’m applying to every job I can, and barely getting any interviews. I’ve been looking into going back to school and I’ve found a few programs I’m interested in, but without a (paying) job, I have no idea how I’m going to afford it.
I consider myself an optimist, which I would say is a result of my faith- that God will never give me more than I can handle and that He had a plan for me that will give me hope and a future. I like to smile and laugh and I just wish I felt like it more. I know in my heart it will all work out, but my head is having a hard time getting it.