Have you ever felt lost? Or not knowing what to do with your life?
Well that’s how I am feeling right now. It is so complicated when you look out, and you don’t even know where to restart from. And at the same time asking for help it’s even more humiliating because in a way you have to admit that you failed, that you need people, that you need someone who could help you see what you are not able to see by yourself.
Sometimes just everything seems wrong, you start assessing your life and it’s not even close to what you have imagined. I spent years of my life studying fashion and developing my design skills, after three years of frustration after frustration I decided to quit being a designer. You must be thinking that I wasn’t a good designer, and I will tell you that is not true. I was.
People used to love my work, and one year after graduation I was a finalist in a national competition for young designers. But what made me quit was that I never had an opportunity in the fashion industry, and I couldn’t cope with all that inflated egos and all that shallowness that exists in this world. Today I just look at it as an old love that I have to let go because it was hurting me more than making me happy.
Meanwhile, I started work in a few advertising agencies as a PR assistant or content developer for some fashion brands. Last year I decided to start a Masters in marketing, and I loved most of the subjects but I completely despised my colleagues; not all of them of course but once again the feeling of not fitting started hunting me. I couldn’t cope with all that capitalist way of thinking that only takes something serious if the revenues are good, and the implicit sexism in so many of the examples used in the classroom.
I decided to take a break, travel a bit and try to figure things out in-between. And just as I made my plan I got an internship proposal in Belgium in April this year. It took me a while to accept it, but I eventually I went for it thinking that I will be able to learn a lot, have my voice in a small start-up, use all that I learned throughout those years and also to enjoy the different cultural experience.
Well, it just sounds too amazing, right?
The internship didn’t come out really well: it was not even close to what I have expected. Without revealing too much, the company was so much just starting up that legal things were not cleared up, and I felt it is safer if I leave them. I know that it was the smartest (adult) decision I could’ve had taken, but the feeling of failing was once again was heavy on me. I decided to keep on working as a freelancer trend researcher, so for the following month, I almost didn’t leave the house. Of course, I had a great experience, and I’ve met a lot of exciting people, and that was the most amazing part. (This is why you are reading this right now – yes I met some MCL women)
It’s been two weeks that I am back home, to Brazil, and it’s been tough. You realize that you’ve changed, and everything else has changed, and you don’t recognize that girl you were just four months ago. Coming back home feels like taking a step back, and it hurts.
Everybody’s lives seem more successful than yours, and I’m not envious I really am glad to see the achievements of my friends. I love them with all my heart, and I want them to be as successful as they can. But it doesn’t change my feeling of being lost, not knowing what to do right now, or what’s next.
Asking for an opportunity is hard. You know in moments when not even you believe in yourself, and after the series of failures you just think there might be something wrong with you, why everyone else seem to get such great opportunities in their work, or personal life and everything.
And your life on the other side just seems to be such a mess, and you don’t know where you should start the work to put it back on track again. It is hard when you feel inside that you could do great things but at the same time you lack the confidence to try or share your abilities with others.
I wish I had a magical solution to all this problems, but unfortunately, that’s not what life is about, right? Life is a continuing learning process and a searching for a meaning in everything we do. As much as I feel sad and frustrated, sometimes I just try to look all this as a way to learn and grow as a person, and I believe that for some reasons I needed to go through this and yes, in a way that’s what keeps me moving.
It is just a like when you are at school, and you need to learn something that you hate, but you are told that it would be useful in the future. So you suffer to learn and succeed on that subject and then when you finish you think ‘ah, it wasn’t that bad at all’ and quietly you admit ‘I even had a little bit of fun on the way.’