There once was a little girl who genuinely believed she could read the whole entire set of the World Book Encyclopedia. From A to Z. She would sit curled up in a fort she had made, with Volumes D and E longing to be read, planted deeply in the heart of the Congo as it jumped off the pages to take shelter in the mind of this little girl.
She wanted to know everything. The way the world worked. Why the stars only came out only at night. Every event of Shirley Temple’s life. The customs and cultures of each country on the map hanging outside her bedroom. Perhaps if she could know everything, that could make up for all the things she could not know just yet.
How she would grow up.
Where she would go to college.
How the world might decide to open its arms up to her.
If she could let her mind dance along the pages of an encyclopedia, then it might never long to stray into the crevices of the facts that she could not yet hold in the palm of her hand.
We are in an age and era where we can literally know anything and everything with the click of a mouse and touch of the scroll bar. How that little girl’s heart would have fluttered if she had Google at that age. Knowledge is at our very fingertips, the possibilities are absolutely endless.
But when it comes to our futures and our plans, that is something we cannot type into Google and find it waiting for us somewhere amidst the 63,490,402 results. Sometimes life makes us wait. We want to kick and scream, but no matter our rant, life will still make us wait.
I am in a state of limbo right now. You know the kind? Where you are hanging between the chapter of your life that you have precariously been writing for so long but you can see the second, even more eventful, chapter looming on the horizon. I can almost say for certain where I am going next year, but am not positive enough where I am ready to scream it out on this blog.
But this week has been a lesson for me (oh life, how cute and funny you are for using instances like this one to teach me lessons… NOT!). This week was one in which I was supposed to learn FOR CERTAIN where I would be going next year for service. But like that awful brat in the toy store who lets out blood curdling screams over every shiny gadget that she thinks is vital to her life, we cannot always get what we want. At least not when we want it.
It’s good that it happened this way.
It is good when things transpire that keep us in check and remind us to “pump the brakes” and be patient. We need to be reminded every once in a while that life is not as simple as typing our questions into a search engine and pulling out an answer in .002 seconds. It reminds us that no matter how fast-paced and high-speed we can potentially make every aspect of our lives, the real stuff will still make us wait like a little child on Christmas Eve.
And for me, that is reason enough to believe that this life is not about knowing every little thing that we possibly can. It is not all about insisting on reading several volumes of the Encyclopedia. Because we live, and I mean really live, in the unknown. In What Is Not Yet Certain. And How It Makes Us Feel.
So I need to become a little more patient. I need to realize that life is still happening even when all plans are not set and ready. If it was not this, then it would be something else.
But that little girl, the one that I left sitting in her fortress, made of sheets and couch cushions, for this entire entry (and I sure she doesn’t even notice), I think she and I are thinking the same thing right now. Isn’t it grand and isn’t it exciting to have something to wait for, to have something to look forward to.
If Mr. Forrest Gump is right, and if life really is a box of chocolates, well then throw out the map on the box because I am ready and waiting to see what is going to happen next…
Are you in limbo too?