Have you ever walked to the ocean, when no one else was in sight? The seagulls aren’t even awake yet and all you hear is the roar of waves crashing against the rocks? The sand is still cold because the sun has yet to emerge from the horizon, the sky is still gray. All you hear is that deep, rolling thunderous noise of the tide coming in.
And all you can think is “Woah.”
Because you see, with your own two eyes, just how big the ocean is. That it’s so much larger then you originally thought. Sure, textbooks may have taught you that our Earth is mostly water, but now you’ve seen it.
I definitely had my own, ocean-sized ‘Woah’ moment last night.
Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Ashli Jade, I’m an on-again-off-again blogger living in the suburbs, which has led to several cases of same-house-syndrome ( Ever walked into one that wasn’t yours?) as well as- in combination with other things going on- mild and moderate depression.
My parents had met in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The second most populous city in the state and you still have to drive an hour to Denver if you want to do something worth your time. They married shortly after I was born, and soon after a separation between the two landed myself, my newborn brother, and my mother in Sacramento, California with a strange old woman who smelled of something she called ‘spinach’ and hung lowercase Ts in every room and made us touch our foreheads, chests, and shoulders before eating ( I would later learn that she was my grandmother).
Eventually, a divorce was issued, which brings us to them now living on opposite sides of the same street and me not remembering a time when they were together. You’d think, after sixteen-seventeen years I would have gotten over the fact that I never really had a family. That I would have found some way to cope after all that time. But the truth is what I didn’t know what a family was, or what I was missing. I had been under the impression that what had happened was what was supposed to happen ( Don’t get me wrong. Both my mom and my dad are amazing people and we love each other very much and so on and so forth.)
The shocking thing was, as I got older and became more associated with other people and their families, and saw what they all had in common that mine didn’t ( ” You eat Thanksgiving dinner together?”), I never really became resentful toward the situation, sometimes upset, but strangely never bitter towards them. And that’s where our story begins.
For as long as I could remember, I’ve had one mission and one mission only: Get a boyfriend. In second grade, all I wanted was a boyfriend, and the same goes throughout the years until about midway through my sophomore year of high school. As I continued getting older, the obsessive goal had become more and more intricate. Suddenly, I didn’t just want a boyfriend, I wanted a high school sweetheart who I would get married to and we could have a healthy relationship and nothing would ever go wrong.
Crazy thing was I never really got one. Of course there had been flings here and there, but I was far too picky. No one that crossed my path lived up to the ridiculous expectation.
But never once did I question why I had wanted it so badly. Yes, all my friends were always in loving relationships, but they all also had horrible piercings and self-done tattoos and I didn’t want any of those.
Last night, something came to the surface. It was never about having a date on Friday night. It was never about just having a boyfriend, that’s not what I wanted. I had wanted my own family. My own family to have holiday dinners. My own family to sit with at church. My own family.
Currently, do I know that I have a family? Yes. Did I have to date someone to find these wonderful people? Absolutely not.
But that it isn’t the point of this.
The point is that sometimes, if not all the time, we need to ask ourselves why. If we don’t, we may spend our lives trying to accomplish something that isn’t worth our time, nor is it what we really want. Because if you don’t ask why, by the time you realize that that what you’re really striving for isn’t what you want, but the feeling associated with it, you will have already wasted to much time and energy you could have put into doing something you love.
Money, fame, significant others, luxury items…They don’t emanate some healing force that magically cures unhappiness or illness. They don’t make you young and full of energy.
Ask yourself why, and keep asking yourself why you want what you want, why you’ do the things you do, and eventually you’ll come to the bottom line find feelings that you’ve been chasing, and you can decide whether or not it’s worth going after. Or if you’re going after it the right way.