‘Who are you? Who are you?’
Standing in the bathroom mirror, pink towel twisted around my head, plastering a honey face mask on. Questioning myself.
‘Who are you?’
‘What do you want?’
‘What are you thinking?’
I sighed. I’ve been here before. The empty feeling… The lost feeling… Not quite feeling fulfilled.
Up until recently I’ve always felt a bit lost…
For as long as I can remember, I have always been determined to enter the medical profession, whether that be physical health or mental health. But, for as long as I can remember, I have never known my exact motivation behind this. For me, this has always been an issue because I need to know what drives me, what sets my soul on fire and what brings me joy, ultimately so that I know what to focus on when I (finally) look for a job.
But, it is only in the past year, since being discharged from my last (my very LAST) hospital admission, that I was lucky enough to have the time to focus on myself, do things I genuinely love and, importantly, find myself; a real sense of who I am and what I stand for.
When you’ve lost a sense of who you are, it’s similar to the grieving process when you lose a loved one. You’re grieving a person you knew and identified with. You’ve lost a sense of comfort. For so many years I had fallen out of touch with myself. I’d given into other ideas of what I was supposed to be or should be doing.
BUT… when you follow what you think you are supposed to be doing rather than what you want to be doing, it’s a path that leads to losing yourself. If you want to do something, but don’t because of someone else’s expectations, you are not living your own life.
I kind of imagine it like aimlessly wondering through unfamiliar woods. The longer you continue walking in one direction, the more lost you become. That is what the path of not being your truest, happiest, and most authentic self is like. You loose yourself.
I lost myself.
When you are finding yourself, you find what makes you truly happy, not just ‘happy enough.’ Finding yourself opens up your potential to truly accomplish anything you set your mind to. What we’ve learned, society’s expectations, and the path that seemed to be paved for us at birth all create an avalanche that pushes you along and sweeps you up until you don’t know who you are anymore.
I left hospital and I knew I was ‘fine’. But I had decided that fine was not enough.
Fine is not thriving.
Fine is not complete.
Fine is not what I came here to experience. I wanted to set my soul on fire.
‘What I do for my work is exactly what I would do if nobody paid me.’
… And, that’s when I realised why I wanted to go into the medical profession, the mental health setting particularly, because I can’t think of anything more rewarding than knowing I might be helping someone, giving someone hope and reminding them that life is ALWAYS worth the journey. Your life is precious. Your story is precious. And, you are adding words to your story every single day, whether or not you know it. Your story is special. YOU are special.
I threw out the term ‘a new lease on life’. Leases expire. I worked for a new life and it is mine. For keeps. Now I’ve found myself and I know what makes me happy, I realised what set my soul on fire. I know that I am my happiest when I am helping people, when I am making others smile or igniting them with a sense of hope. And, after everything I’ve gone through in my own life, I know what it feels like to be lost, to have given up and to forget who I am so if I am able to help one single individual regain a sense of hope, or lust for life, then I will be truly happy.
Find YOUR biggest motivation in life. Find it and grab it. Pursue it. Prove yourself to… yourself and no one else.
Love E x