It has been awhile since I’ve felt the desire to push myself towards something I truly cared about in life. To be honest, after I postponed pursuing medicine I didn’t enjoy setting real goals for myself. It was frustrating. My life always had direction and purpose. When all the sudden you lose your way it’s scary and makes you feel like a failure for some reason. That period made me realize, however, that you sometimes need to search. What’s scarier than not knowing where you are heading in life is heading in the wrong direction but being too stubborn to turn around and find the best path for you. It’s okay to not always have a plan and make mistakes. Repeat…it’s okay to not always have a plan and make mistakes.
When I first graduated and moved north to New Jersey it took me about a month to find my first job. That month was a roller coaster of emotions. Why was I letting my employment status determine my self worth? Probably because that is what society tells us. Nobody sat me down and said, “Courtney, in order to be a worthy human being you must have a job, health insurance, and start saving for retirement.” It seems like that’s what most people are preoccupied with and therefore is the message I get.
It took longer than I’d hoped but now there’s direction in my life again. It’s a direction that actually means something to me. My career path is developing and I know which steps need to be taken to get there. Coincidentally, other goals have been developing in my life. For instance, I’ve always cared about improving my run. Running fast has seemed to allude me in the past couple of years mainly because I’ve been inconsistent with training. Lately, I’m excited for my run workouts, care about my splits more, and want to push my body. This was never a problem in the past. I loved pushing my limits. For some reason, that stopped…until now. Yesterday, I was finally proud of how I raced. Previous races, there were always these voices in the back of my mind, “You could have trained harder, You could have pushed more. You could have…” Yesterday, they were silent. I knew my training had been solid and I had raced my hardest. Pride filled my lungs as I crossed the finish line 18 seconds faster than my goal of breaking 21:00 in a 5K. For five whole minutes afterwards I was simply happy with no regrets.
Six minutes after I finished my race I was already musing over the next goal I would push myself to do.
That feels so good.