Hi, I’m Lost. Nice to meet you! Kidding, just kidding. Jasmine is my government name, but I certainly do feel as though the word ‘Lost’ should be tattooed on my forehead. So, out of twenty-six years of my life, I’ve finally allowed myself the permission to boldly go where I’ve never gone before. I’ve already taken my first steps, but now that I’m out in the open, frankly I feel vulnerable as hell.
I Have No Idea What I’m Doing and I’m Scared Out Of My Mind
“I’m a boss ass bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch” – This is the song by PTAF that randomly just came to my head when trying to think how to accurately describe how scared I am. I can’t remember the last time I actually heard this song but for some reason, the words feel true to the many emotions swirling in my body. I even had to look up the lyrics just to be sure I was thinking of an actual song and not just something I made up in my head.
It’s sort of like a war cry for me. Everything about that song describes the opposite of who I am now, but who I want to be – unapologetically confident. The very fact that the song is so vulgar makes me feel super weird, but in a good way. If you knew me personally you’d know that unless I felt comfortable around you – I don’t cuss. In fact, I was raised by devout religious family so the avoidance of obscenities was deeply ingrained in me while growing up.
The more I think about it, the more I’m realizing how significant and relevant this song is for my current situation. Remember, I’m scared, but it took courage for me to type the words out while knowing these words will be seen by so many unfamiliar eyes. Something I’m highly uncomfortable with. What will you think of me? What if some of you get offended just from reading that first sentence? What if you negatively judge me? What if, what if, what if? Well, what if I don’t care what anyone thinks? What if I’m doing this for myself? There is where lies my point. I know the monster that I’ll be seated with throughout this ride, but that shouldn’t deter me from getting on anyway. I simply have to do it and courageously do it scared.
I Have No Idea What I’m Doing, But Maybe That’s a Good Thing
I wouldn’t say that I’ve undoubtably reached my rock bottom because let’s be real, no matter how bad things are it could ALWAYS be a lot worse. It just feels like I’ve been hit with an atomic bomb and left for dead when to my horror, I’m still breathing! It always feels that way when not so great things are happening to you. I used to resent anyone who would say things like this to me because it felt like they were downplaying my troubles. I knew things could be worse than they were, but I didn’t want to be told that! Why couldn’t anyone be sympathetic to the troubles I did have? To me, they felt enormous enough.
Well, what I’ve since learned and have grown to appreciate, it can be helpful to take a step back when your world feels like it is caving in and pay attention to the bigger picture. Sometimes when you’re so enveloped in whatever obstacle is in your life, you have no room for anything else. You become so fixated on your problems, the solutions seem to be out of reach or invisible altogether. What you focus on becomes your reality. If you fix your focus, you fix your picture.
Here is where I eat my words. In as many nerves that I can gather, I need to take my own advice and do it now. I’ve reached my very own endgame and it feels as though I’ve been waiting for this moment my whole life. Now that I’m finally here, the possibilities are a tad overwhelming. My life suddenly feels like one of those Give Yourself Goosebumps books because you’re in the control of the story and every decision you make could either prove to be disastrous or fall in your favor. That’s what I always loved about those books, though, because no matter what I chose I knew it was going to be exciting and I couldn’t wait to see what was waiting for me, good or bad.
The truth of the matter is this, from where I stand at this moment, if I dwell on it long enough, the thought of where I should go causes me to feel a panic that I have never felt before. This is a new breed of panic that makes my heart beat abnormally fast, my chest feel tight, builds pressure in my head, raises my body temperature and gives me the jitters. It’s quite the experience but in a better headspace, it’s something I can also learn from and appreciate too. Day by day, moment by moment, I’m learning so much about myself that I often wonder if had I never decided to do the things that got me here in the first place, would I have ever learned them? Maybe. Hard to say, but what’s so obvious to me is that in order to get what you’ve never had, you have to be willing to do something you’ve never done.
Fortunately for us, we’re meeting each other from the very beginning. Here, you have the vantage point of being the observer. As made obvious, I don’t quite know what I’m doing just yet. I am a novice in every sense of the word. I get frustrated like every five minutes because I’m impatient and don’t want to go through the learning process. A large part of me feels like I should just already know what to do and things should come naturally to me like it seems to be for other people who are already successful. However, I can already tell that I’m putting way too much pressure on myself so the battle for finding the calm in the storm has become my first lesson. Nothing has to be perfect starting out, which is why the end result of everything you’ve ever worked for tastes so sweet when it’s finally accomplished.
Pick Your Favorite Pair of Sweats and Get Comfortable
Mindset makes such a big difference because it will either make the journey smooth or bumpy. For me and my dreams, I already know that I have a long road ahead of me so I’m trying to get my mind prepped and ready. I have said multiple times that I feel like I’m standing at the bottom of an enormous mountain, so my will often is compromised. Rationally, I understand that the time will pass anyway, so what am I really intimidated by? Perhaps getting a grip on my emotions will allow me to think more clearly.
Speaking of emotions, I forgot to mention that I suffer with depression. I’ve never been formerly diagnosed by a physician, but if you ask just about everyone who knows me well, they would agree and confirm it to be undeniable. It has affected me for most of my life up to this point, and looking back with a transitioning mindset now, I often feel twinges of anger. For anyone who has felt similar feelings, you probably know exactly what I mean. Now that a lot of things have shifted in my life – my thoughts, feelings and beliefs, included in that is my ironclad belief that my depression would ultimately lead to my demise and I would likely never be able shake it.
It is incredible how things can change.
Yes, change has introduced itself to me as a very obnoxious constant. I notice it more and more every day and it’s sort of comforting in a way. It’s something that I can always count on never being the same, and that realization is transforming how I’m preparing myself for the rest of my adventure. As I use it to analyze my past, I can understand it a lot more transparently now. By being stuck in one place, with paralyzing beliefs, thoughts and feelings, I unknowingly made myself miserable. Which, to me, would explain my debilitating depression. It’s true that I do have a few tragic story plots that reasonably warrant deep sadness, but back then I felt limited to ever being able to move on from those feelings. At least, in my lifetime.
Now, I don’t have much of a dominant doom and gloom feeling anymore. While I used to dread my future and despise my present, I’m now very excited and impatient to hurry and get there because I envision a much more positive scenario. I don’t know how it’s like to be and do all the things that I’ve always wanted for myself, so during this time I have an opportunity to make the very best of it. I feel like I have a second chance to get my story right yanno, so I pass along the same advice to you. You don’t know exactly how things will plan out, what will go wrong or right, even how long this process will be. But, still do your best to enjoy the process because the time will pass anyway, so you might as well enjoy it, right?
Throw Things At The Wall And See What Sticks
A cool thing about the journey is being able to brainstorm and test what will work for you and what won’t. You have plenty of time to hypothesize, so now is the time to do it! For all the things that I see for myself, all of them have lists of things that need to be done in order for it to happen. Greatness doesn’t just happen overnight, so put all of your ideas on paper, look over it and simply pick one thing that you want to do the most and focus on only that. If one thing doesn’t work, fortunately you have your list of other things you can do. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing because you have plenty of options!
For example, I want to be a YouTuber, but I have low skills and experience making videos or working with graphics, I’m camera shy and I’m not knowledgeable with any of the logistics. Guess what I can do? I can use this time to sink my feet deep into learning all about the wonderful world of YouTube, develop my skills and over time become the best damn YouTuber I ever imagined I could be. The sky is the limit! I have so much to look forward to, and so do you with your dreams. All you have to do is believe in yourself and you’ll be amazed at what you’re capable of.
Anything Is Possible For Anyone
I love listening to Les Brown motivational videos because I feel that he has a colorful way of putting things into an interesting perspective. He often talks about his life story as his way to show people that if he can do, anyone can do it. His story personally touches me because I feel it is considerably tragic in terms of the ways ideal beginnings go. I can also relate to bits and pieces of it so it tugs on my heart strings a bit more. His life started out from being born in an abandoned building, with his brother. Can you imagine? What a way to start your life. He was then adopted by a wonderful woman named Mamie Brown. His dream was to be a public speaker, but he was labeled as “educable mentally retarded”, which damaged his self esteem and confidence. Even still, he learned how to reach his full potential with two guiding forces in his life, his mother and one of his teachers while he was in high school.
His story may not be the most heart wrenching story you have ever heard, but it’s still a powerful testimony to the human will and spirit. He could’ve looked at his past and chosen a completely different path. He could’ve dwelled on his tragedy and lived as a victim for the rest of his life – but he didn’t. This is the reason why I admire him so much. As I mentioned earlier, I can relate to a little of his story. The beginning of my story isn’t something I would’ve chosen for myself, even if I knew I could use it to my advantage. I chose a different path, and I chose to live as a victim for twenty-six years. It has affected my relationships, my health and the way that I have felt about myself.
Like Les Brown and so many other success stories, they’re a source of strength for me because they show me that redemption is possible. It’s possible for people to change, it’s possible for change to change, it’s possible for you and I to become whatever it is that makes us feel the most alive. It’s possible, it really is. So much so that it’s Les Brown’s personal catch phrase – it’s what he’s known by. It’s possible! It’s possible! And I for one am looking so forward to getting to know myself all over again, but this time with a healed heart and soul.
What are you waiting around for? Go get started on your hopes and dreams! Just remember, try not to put so much pressure on yourself because nothing has to be perfect right away. Allow yourself room to grow and evolve, prepare your heart and mind for the arrival of your very own transformation and most importantly, enjoy the ride! As Ferris Bueller once said, ”Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it”.
I wish us both all the best!
Sending you positive vibes and happy travels.
~ Jasmine Sanders