I used to describe my state of being as one who is treading water (in a flailing sort of fashion) just to survive each day.
It was like that in high school as well as college. I’d have so many things going on and so many things to worry about and tangled up in life that I felt like I was treading water to save my life, flapping my limbs around just to stay afloat. But I knew I needed (and wanted) to make some drastic changes in my lifestyle and mindset because it just didn’t seem sustainable. I was so, so tired. I so desperately wanted to stop treading water and just swim.
And somehow, slowly but surely, I began to swim.
But after getting married and moving to a new city, I feel like I’m back in treading-water-mode. Except, it feels much different. I feel more aware of the vastness of the ocean, with no end or shore in sight. And I don’t feel overly busy or any more tangled up in life situations than the normal craziness of complex human relationships tends to offer. I’m much more cautious about what responsibilities I commit to, almost to an unhealthy point of feeling paralyzed. But that’s a topic for a different time. At the same time, I’m trying to be faithful and work hard with the responsibilities I already have, and yet I feel like I come up short with every swing I take. I feel like there’s not enough time.
So this treading water business feels much more like slow motion. It’s less of an urgent panic to stay alive and more of a painful test of endurance.
This slow-mo water treading state of being has started to become familiar territory amongst my post-grad life. This slow-mo water-treading state of being is made up of the feelings I get when I realize how much I wish my family lived in Rochester with me, how much I miss my friends, and how awful trying to stay in touch and continue our relational growth with all of them is. This state of being is made up of the feelings I have during late nights like tonight where I can’t fall asleep because my mind is filled with so many unanswered questions and stirrings of envy of others after being on Facebook. It’s made up of the feelings I have during moments of frustration and hopelessness in trying to figure out what it means to do my job and what it means to serve students at RIT. It’s a great sense of lostness and moments of loneliness.