Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Day at the Lake

When I was in high school, I always sat by the window during class and it was torture. While the teacher was babbling on about some boring topic, I would stare out the window and wish I could be out in the world, living, rather than stuck in a stuffy old classroom. I used to see women walking on the sidewalk and I would long to jump out the window and join them. Or, I would see an airplane in the sky and jealousy would consume me. Those passengers were obviously going someplace a lot more fabulous. Even the faint sound of cars zooming down the busy street was enough to make my heart ache. Out there was a world filled with people who could do whatever they wanted all day—grab coffee, go for a walk, take a trip, etc.—while I was stuck with a bunch of suburban hooligans in a public high school.

Now, being 26 and out in the actual world, I still feel like I want to be on the other side of that window. But I am on the other side, right? That's why it feels so confusing.

It's this helpless feeling of always wanting to be somewhere else, always grasping for something that is just barely within my reach.

I felt that way during my job as a reporter. Our office was located next to railroad tracks and every time a train would whoosh by, I would fantasize about hopping it, just to see where it would take me. I always imagined it would take me somewhere magical, even though, in reality, it would probably just take me to Oklahoma or something.

I also feel that way when I'm driving down the highway. Sometimes it is so tempting to keep on going towards the sunset, instead of getting off at my exit. I want to drive into the distance because it always seems better than where I am. Everything does.

Today was no different.

Rian took the day off work and we went to the lake for a picnic lunch. It was so beautiful and so serene, I wanted to engulf myself in the natural beauty. I desperately wanted to be part of the scenery, rather than enjoying it. Does that make sense? Probably not...



Rian and I strolled by the lake, holding hands and smiling.

Older folks walking nearby gave us appreciative glances, pleased to see a young couple enjoying the afternoon sunshine.



But inside I was despondent and Rian was battling his own demons.

It wasn't a total illusion, however. I was happy in the moment. I was just simply overwhelmed with this unsettling feeling and a question that has been nagging me for years: When will I ever be satisfied with where I am?

50 comments:

Lawgirl said...

Honey, you're only 26. You are still at the very beginning. You have so much time in front of you. You will change your mind 1000 times before you will be satisfied.

Besides, life really gets good in your 30s. Really. Promise.

Sutton said...

what a beautiful day. maybe one day you should just drive off to the sunset... who knows what will happen!

Josie said...

Love, you have so much time. I promise; you are going to lead such a fabulous life. For now, at the very least, you always look darling.
xxoo Josie
http://winksmilestyle.blogspot.com

Savvy Gal said...

26 is still very young. You have a wonderful future ahead for you. : )

Leia said...

You know, it may just be a human emotion, to never be satisfied with where you are. But that being said, you deserve infinitely more happiness and I am SURE that it's on its way to you, right now :)

Inspiration in Italy said...

You look so beautiful, and what a lovely day. It's not a bad thing to be a dreamer...I definitely am! I always felt the same way during class as a child.

You have so much time, the possibilities are endless for us dreamers....

xo
Rachel

gleenn said...

That's very sweet of Rian to take you for a picnic. lovely!

Girl, this sounds like me at some points. Sometimes, when I'm walking to work, and I'd see some girls heading to work as well, I'd think of how would it be like to be them? They don't to go to work and face a bunch of stressful/rude teenagers a.k.a students. But I'd always wonder, just like that.

That's why I love the poem of Robert frost "The Road Not taken" :)

daisychain said...

just sending some love x

Kristin said...

I was always searching for something else in my mid twenties too. Enjoy the ride sweets. Before you know it you'll be headed down a different path!

Audrey Allure said...

Beautiful photos, looked like an amazing stroll. I, too, always daydream about going somewhere. Maybe more days like that are just what you need :)

Men's Knitwear said...

Wonderful pics! Looks like so much fun

Jen Ben said...

Jenny Benny, I know that you will find what you want to do with your life. I believe in you with all my heart and you know that you can always call me to talk about things :-) Love you!

p.s. That photo of the lake with Rian is just gorgeous and so artistic!

Mina said...

That's how I feel now in high school. So uncontent of where I live and what I'm doing. It's so unsettling, and making me not focus on anything else. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I understand what you're going through.

yiqin; said...

Ahh gorgeous photos <3

English Rose ♥ said...

This was so well written, you expressed yourself beautifully and I know exactly how you feel - and i'm only 17!

You aren't alone my lovely, I just hold on to the belief that it will get better and i'll look back on these times from my jumbo jet and laugh - you'll be sitting next to me =]

Stay safe and chic ma chérie,
English Rose x
http://iamanenglishrose.blogspot.com

Tights Lover said...

I used to do the same thing in high school, how funny! I wasn't much for interacting with my own group of 'suburban hooligans'...hahaha!

Honestly, I think you should be more worried when you STOP feeling this way. You want to strive for something better, and that's a good thing, as long as you don't forget all that you've already achieved. I hope you're able to find everything you're looking for.

....and before things get too deep. Loved your comment today...glad I was able to make you laugh!!

Barry said...

I think in some form or another we're all searching for something, honey. Even if we're blissfully happy there's always something 'more' to be had.

It's easy (and dare I say human nature) to feel unsettled and look at what we don't have instead of where we are. But think of what was around you in that park. As the older couples watched you and Rian were they realizing they have fewer years ahead than behind? Upon seeing you did the ladies reflect on a time in their youth when they were a young beautiful woman like you and wish they could go back?
Did a single boy or girl who passed by see you smiling and holding hands, wishing they had someone to spend their life with too?
So many people on the outside look happier than we feel sometimes. Yet as you smiled in that park, wearing a mask of false bravado in defiance of your uncertainties, I think it's safe to say that some of the apparently-happy souls who passed you by were feeling the same.
What I mean by all this is that despite how it feels sometimes, you're not alone. And while what you're experiencing may suck, it won't last.
It'll also make you appreciate the better times when they come along. I know they will, and I look forward to you telling me all about those moments.
Love you forever Jen, you're always in my thoughts. Hope we'll talk soon. :)

xoxo

Lesley Ann said...

I pretty much feel this way everyday. We always want to be some place other than where we are-whether it be inside ourselves or on a plane or train to some exotic loctation.
I dream of getting in my car and just traveling around the U.S.-one day maybe.
Just know that you are not alone in how you feel and maybe one day, in some fabulous spot, we will meet unexpectedly and laugh about this!

JUST ME said...

Seriously - hear you so loud and clear it's like our brains are connected.

Jaime @ La vie...J'aime said...

What a lovely day! I really like that last photo :)

OneCraftyFox said...

When you're not in your 20's anymore, hun. That's when you'll know.

Thanks so much for the nice compliment on my new clothes I posted on my blog. I can't even begin to tell you how long it took me to sew those dresses. lol! Funny thing is, I haven't sewn myself anything in ages. Everything goes right up for sale in my Etsy shop and I don't have time to make anything for myself :)

Take Care,
Diana

Some Girl said...

I know what you mean. I have that habit too. Sometimes I think it's just something in me. It doesn't matter how old I am or where I travel to, there's always going to be something unsettling and unsatisfied inside of me somewhere.

Style, She Wrote said...

The grass isn't always greener, you know? I totally understand where you're coming from. My best advice: just try to appreciate where you are in your life any given day and you will be fulfilled.

Hope it helps!

myrrh goldframe said...

beautiful pics. <33

Streetosphera said...

I love your photos.They are very...autumish :))

Smerica Anderjones said...

Wow, nice blog! :D Do you take the pictures yourself? :)
Huggs xx

Erica in Singapore! :D

Smerica Anderjones said...

Wow, nice blog! :D Do you take the pictures yourself? :)
Huggs xx

Erica in Singapore! :D

.:JoaNNa:. said...

lovely pictures you have there! humans are never satisfied indeed, so i guess just appreciate of what you already have because other people may look at you and feel jealous of your fabulous life! that you'll be happier ;)
hugs!

xo, Jo

Imogen said...

Jennifer, I wish more than anything that you feel satisfied with where you are in life. I know that we might all say that you are fine and there is a lot of time to work things out (which objective there is) but I understand that satisfaction is a personal journey and sometimes, no matter how together your life may be, it doesn't seem to be unless you feel it yourself. I do see a bright fututre for you, I honestly do, but at the same time I identify with your feelings.I'm pleased that you enjoyed the moment and the beautiful place you went to. I think thats important; to enjoy things for what they are at the time and put concerns to the back of your mind. I have been attempting to do that with my own personal struggles right now. Maybe also sometime you could drive past your exit and into that sunset. I know its not a permanent solution but sponteneity and exploration can often be important I think.

COCAMIA said...

You have so much life and living ahead of you! I am almost 40 and it's now that I finally feel like I am free and really living my true life! It's an exciting time for you! Enjoy every moment, good or bad...xoxo

Cafe Fashionista said...

I think that true satisfaction and happiness can't be achieved until you stop searching for it and just live in the moment. Be happy with what you have right now. Be satisfied with what you have right now. And new opportunities will seek YOU out.

Love you, love you!! :)

elledee said...

such a pretty day! looks like fun

bollywoodstylediaries said...

there's a reason why Diandra is a top model:-)

sonali

lauren lanza osias said...

i think it's honestly a constant battle with passionate people... you always feel like there is more out there. ya know? and you feel like you should be doing and being... and sometimes in the pursuit of that you forget to be and do. i suffer with this too, but i have to remind myself that everyday is wonderful and i am trying to be and do what I want to be... not many people can say the same thing... so just be strong and love life. be you ;) you're fabulous.

http://laurenlanzaosias.blogspot.com
be a follower, not a hater...

Fashion Court said...

i completely understand where you're coming from. i went to school across the street from an airport and every. single. day. i wished i was in the air, going somewhere instead of in class. as a kid, i couldn't wait to grow up..but now i'm wishing i was younger again. i'm only going to be 20 in november but i feel like i should have done SO more by now (i think you'll know what i mean.) we both have to hang in there. jennifer - it may not seem like it now, but things will get better, and i'm not just saying it. they will. just hang in there <3

beckyxoxo said...

Hi Jen ! I miss you ! I'm such a lazy blogger . Haha . And that's what I think everyday at school . I really want to get out of it , live life . Glad you had fun with your boy ! Wish you the best dear :) Thank you for your lovely comment ! Have a nice weekend ! xoxoxo

CMA said...

looks like youre having so much fun!
thanks for sharing darling!
and thanks for your comments, it was so sweet of you!

-cma
COSMICaroline.blogspot.com

Leah said...

You are still young... just live your life and never stop dreaming and hoping. I always wish that I can be a sort of inspiration to the younger set like you... I'm really so much older than you and I had my share of life's up's and down's but I never stopped living.

Happy Easter! xoxo

The Trendy Fashionista said...

The lake looks beautiful and you do as well. Hope you had a fantastic weekend and continue to enjoy the great weather:)

-The Trendy Fashionista
http://thetrendyfashionista.blogspot.com

Chloe, Butterfly Cupcakes said...

I know the feeling of allways wanting to be somewhere else, the truth is I just want to be around people I love and people that love me. These photos are lovely also.

fhen said...

do the best on what you are doing now, life is a journey itself, so enjoy every moment and at the end it is the journey that satisfies you not the end point. satisfy and happiness will come to your way if you let them to.
happy easter
xoxo

Missy said...

i understand completely. i am often lost in my own thoughts cpnstantly fearing i wont be able to ever actually get what i want. Sure i seem like i'm happy - smiling and surrounded by family but underneath i feel empty and longling to be free.

Missy
Enter my Hana flat iron giveaway:
http://thefashionfusion.blogspot.com

Christen said...

I really do believe that one day we will all have it figured out. And even if we don't have it figured out all the time, we will have "moments" of figuring it out. There will be moments throughout our lives where we know we are exactly where we are supposed to be. We just have to be conscious of them when they occur.

Vicki said...

my dear i wish i had the answer for you.. I turn 26 tomorrow and i dont have the answers, i think one day you just have to trust life will sort itself out. Keep your chin up and do whatever you can to make yourself happy and smile.
know you have true friends through blogging :)
vicki xo

Jonesy said...

I like your blog, I'm a new follower. Please check out my blog as well (and follow you like .. i hope you do)

www.the-blisslist.blogspot.com

Sydnie said...

I think that we always want what we can have, but someday, we will always get what we want. Enjoy life, because I promise you ... it will be fabulous at some point!

Sydnie
www.takemeouttotherunway.blogspot.com
Enter my chandelier giveaway now!

Barry said...

Hey Jen, I hope you're having a good Easter weekend. I know holidays with family can be stressful (we went through some drama last night, *sigh*)

Thinking of you honey, as always.

xo

OceanDreams said...

Hey love I still am trying to figure out where to go and what to do with my career, think of this as a new start for a new discovery with new beginnings! No matter how sad or disappointed you may be, create new windows of opportunities for yourself. Or try a new career path only to find out if you like it or not. I don't think you will truly know your path until you give it a shot, I am learning that nothing is guaranteed, that we have to take chances and live life to our fullest potential. I know you can - hugs for you!

Damsels said...

god , i feel the exact same way its almsot nauseating .. there is rarely a moment when im a 100 percent there in the moment and happy .

maybe we are restless or maybe we jsut wish someplace better .. i have a strong suspicion however that as soon as i start to be the person a want to be in the palc ei want to be then i can be happy .. and that somehow i should make it happen on my own ..but what if idont what if i cant ? and if i get there what if i still feel the same .

i totallly get where you are coming from jen

Ela said...

Oh, Jen. This breaks my heart. I think in life we will always want to look ahead and wish we were there. It's human nature - the notion of wanting to progress. I feel like this sometimes worrying about starting a family and when it will finally happen but then I realize that once I attain that I'll worry about how my children do in school, with work, etc. It will never stop. There'll always be that *thing* we hope to accomplish or see come to fruition, but just try and take a step back for now and count the blessings you have and I know things will fall into place. Sometimes life takes us exactly where we need to be.

Big Hugs.