You are never given the dog you want, but the dog you need.

My Own Road

T.G.I.F.

Those words pretty much describe my feelings about today.

Yesterday was hectic beyond all belief, and stressful to boot. But, that’s all behind me now. I’ve got one more week of actual class to eke through and then finals week. After that? Graduation.

That one word is filled with so much relief, hope, and dread.

On one hand, I am more than ready to be done with classes and start my own life, my real life- whatever that may be. But then there’s the other hand that makes me think, “Am I ready?”

Think about it.

You’ve spent your whole life up until this point doing schoolwork of some kind and suddenly, it’s all gone. You’re left adrift without any real direction other than a gut feeling that tells you where you should go and what you really want out of life. There’s something rather terrifying about that.

Should I listen to that voice? If I do, how do I know I won’t be left floundering?

We spend so much of our lives studying for tests and exams that, more often than not, have no real life application. Then, when we finally enter the real world, we find that we may be book smart but we have failed to become life smart.

This fact isn’t lost on me.

I know that I’ve spent my whole life in classrooms, studying for this moment. And now that it’s here?

I can’t help but be a little afraid.

It’s daunting to take that first step into the real world. That little voice keeps saying, “You’re ready. Just take a deep breath and go.” But there will always be that little mocking voice that challenges that other voices view.

Ignore the fact that I’m debating about voices, and that it probably makes me sound a little unstable in the head.

I’ve decided to avoid listening to the negative voice and start listening to the one that is the real me- positive and upbeat.

I know what I want out of life, it’s just a matter of finding a way to get there.

Sure, it’ll take a lot of work and probably more than a few tears and frustration runs, but I’ll get there. One way or another, I’ll be standing on my own two feet- right where I belong.

I’ll share with you the current background of my computer screen:

Hey, you out there.
Yes, you. I have something that for some reason, I just felt this incredible urge to share.
Don’t get me wrong. I barely know you.
So what I have to say may not really affect your life at all.
But it’s still something I’m going to say, so please listen to me.

It’s not your fault.
You’re just a human being like the rest of us.
Even successful people have some problems.

And something else.
You are not a failure. You never were.
You may feel like you aren’t doing anything with your life. That all day long, you do ‘nothing.’
But I want you to remember this-

You’re where you are right now
because you wanted to be right here.
Doing nothing isn’t a waste of life or talent. It’s something that you yourself
wanted more than anything. And that’s what you’re doing.
Other people expect or demand things out of you, but they’re just worried about you. That’s all.
They don’t want to see you become unhappy. They don’t think that what you’re doing is what you wanted to do.
You are loved. In some way, shape, or form.
You may be loved by someone you’ve never even met. But their love is there regardless.

Well, I’ve said what I wanted to.
That’s all.”

There’s always something eye-opening about this, something new each time I read it. Something that is calming and allows me to take that breath I’ve been afraid to take. In an odd way, it gives me a little bit of courage to take that next step into the unknown and follow my path, wherever it might lead me.

As long as I can always put one foot in front of the other, whether I can see the path or not, I know that I’ll have to courage to do so. There are things that I want out of this brief life that I am unwilling to compromise on. There are goals that I will reach, tasks and dreams that I will accomplish in some small way or another, no matter how long they might take to reach.

The road might not always be easy, but in the end- it will always be worth it. And I intend to enjoy every step of it. Life is far too brief to not make the most of it.

What have been some of your life goals, dear readers? What changes in your life have inspired fear, or perhaps a courage that you never realized you had?

While I may not always say it, I do care about each and every one of you- small as my reader base might be. Everyone has hard days and everyone has days where they just feel like hiding under the covers until the storm passes. Always feel that I am a willing listener when needed, and in return, I promise to make you smile and try to brighten your day. Never feel that you aren’t loved or appreciated, because even though you might not realize it, you are very important to someone out there- even if that someone is a cat, dog, child, cousin, old friend, or acquaintance. You are important and you are never truly alone.

On that note, I hope that you have a wonderful Friday and are enjoying the end of the week. Don’t forget to do your FreeKibble(s) of the day and help out a great cause!

Much love,

Anastasia

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12 responses

  1. Anastasia,

    Unfortunately, I seldom read all of my emails or the blog updates that make there way to me due to lack of time. Two years ago I launched my own company after 30 years in the corporate world. One of our companies is 4thedogs.com, something my wife and I are both passionate about.

    The reason I am commenting on your blog is multi-fold;

    First, to congratulate you and wish you luck these coming weeks. I remember those times as you describe and it can be scary for sure.

    Second, to give you some counsel as you join the real world
    1) Be truthful – Whatever you do, those you work for or with will repect you for this besides it is always easier to tell the truth even if it hurts a little.
    2) Know why you made any decision you made – Remeber, no one is perfect, if you make a mistake own it and learn from it. As an employer I would rather hear someone tell me they screwed up, give me the reason they thought something was the right thing to do and learn from it and move on than someone always blaming others, or lying.
    3) Why you are there – Unless you are in health care or working for non-profit groups, remember that they are in business to make money and that your contributions should be to that goal.
    4) Trust in God- If you are a believer then great and remember to seek God’s input (I struggle everyday giving up control). If you’re not a believer at least know why and then remember your character is important.

    Best of luck

    April 20, 2012 at 10:18 am

    • Thank you for your kind words of advice. I’m sure they will be a great use in the coming months ahead. It’s nice to know that honesty is still appreciated, even if it is admitting an error. Again, thank you for the advice and thank you for stopping by!
      – Anastasia

      April 21, 2012 at 12:33 pm

  2. What wonderful sentiment! This IS an incredible moment in time and exhilarating! We are always here for you in any way that we can support you. You are very special to us! Congratulations! All of the hard work will well be worth the effort!

    Love you,
    Maria

    April 20, 2012 at 1:54 pm

  3. Congratulations! We have watched two human sisters graduate. It is a scary and exciting time. Go with you gut on what to do next. If it doesn’t work than try something new.

    Bella and DiDi

    P.S.- DiDi: When I graduated from puppy school I felt the same way you do now. It will pass.

    Bella: I didn’t need puppy school.

    April 20, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    • As always, you two are too sweet 🙂 I’m sure the nerves will pass, just like you say. I look forward to taking my first steps into the real world. Thanks for stopping by 🙂
      – Anastasia

      April 21, 2012 at 12:18 pm

      • You’ll do great!

        April 21, 2012 at 12:35 pm

  4. Tina

    hmm sounds like a human might have been in there writing all that….just remember we are not perfect we are suppose to stumble a bit along the road in life-we are just suppose to know that there are always poeple along the way to help pull those boot straps up and move us in the positive direction. Fear not-you are moving in the right direction sweetie and we are here to help you move that way! Love you!

    April 21, 2012 at 10:17 am

  5. Anastasia…What you are feeling is perfectly normal! I mean when I first graduated, I also had quite a few knots in my stomach. You have a great foundation and up beat spirit and that’s all that you need to face the big wide world out there. The tools for success are passion and positivity and you have both. Experience will come along the journey. Enjoy every step and know that it is absolutely okay to feel spooked of the unknown. Life without mystery is a bore 🙂

    April 25, 2012 at 6:15 am

    • Rayya, I completely agree. I would be horribly bored if nothing random ever happened in my life, and for me, the path I’ve chosen is one that I feel is right for me. Despite what others might think, it’s the path I want to be on. Thanks for stopping by and leaving such sweet words =]

      April 27, 2012 at 12:48 pm

  6. I remember all those feelings. When I face a crossroad in my life, they all come back again! Congratulations. With your maturity, insight, honesty, and skill, you’ll excel in whatever you do. 🙂

    April 26, 2012 at 7:36 pm

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