Sometimes you don't know what you don't know

I use this phrase all the time. It's very applicable to my life right now.

I feel this way every year at the beginning of the school year. Beginning of the year is just pure insanity. The hardest part is that I have to re-train my bladder to hold my pee for 4 hours, because I can't exactly go to the bathroom when I teach 4 classes in a row.

I'm starting a new position at work. I'm dating someone new. I bought a new car, which I've never done in my life. There's so much I don't know!

Do I hate my job? Is this new person a decent human? What kind of financing is best? le sigh.

About 15% of the time, I wake up feeling like, "Yes! I got this. I know how to live as an adult and enjoy myself. I can handle things!" My friends like me, my family loves me, work doesn't hate me, and I don't care that I'm still single.

Th other 85% of the time, I'm wondering how I got this far. I think about how that pan has been sitting on the stove for two days, and I get disgusted with myself. I remember thinking there was an age where I would finally think I'm grown up. That age was about 2 years ago.

Does anyone else get terrified that somehow life let you become an adult, yet you still don't know how to be a big girl and stand up to someone? Thinking particularly at work...I'm willing to work hard, but I don't know what exactly I'm working toward.

Working hard has paid off for me in a lot of ways. College and grad school were hard work. My job is a challenge every single day, and I do my best. But I also spend a lot of time thinking about all the fortune that has fallen my way. Supportive family, good friends, genius parents. How they raised 4 decent humans and still had time to enjoy themselves is still beyond me.

If I had all this fortune (i.e. access to good schools, parents that helped point me in the right direction, the ability to be independent), why do I still feel like I can't quite cut it?  I've gotten through adult challenges so far on my own. Yet in the recent weeks, I feel like everything is out of my control. Constant games of catch-up are how I get through one day to the next.

I'm confident enough in the things I DO KNOW to know when I'm in a situation where I DON'T KNOW what the hell I'm doing. Such as in the new  position at work. Leadership is cool, right? Everyone wants to be one? But what if you get the position, realize it takes up ALL of your time, and you barely have energy to grocery shop enough to keep yourself fed. What do you do? Admit defeat? Or fake it 'till you make it?

Since my new life mantra is about how change is good for the soul, I thought a change at work would be a good way to start the year. Until I realize I've been getting about 4-5 hours of sleep a night, and I put my car keys in my lunchbox instead of my purse last night.

I do not quit things, I never have. Not since I quit the swim team when I was a youngster. Resigning from this new position feels like quitting. But I think there's a larger issue at heart here.

I don't know if teaching is still what I want to do. But how do I know what else it is that I'd really really rather be doing? I've never done anything else. This is year 8. It's been my only job. Anyone that has done a major job switch, tell me your secrets.




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