When I was 15 the future felt endless and almost boundless. I had big dreams from a very young age. If you asked me what I wanted to do I easily and quickly replied, "fix the injustices of the world & help people!" From the moment I could comprehend what the word "unfair" meant, I knew I was put on this earth to fix all those problems. How? I had no idea.
At 15 I didn't need to know what tomorrow brought or how I would get there. I just knew I wanted to get somewhere & had a blissful naivety as to how I would accomplish it. In my mind nothing felt too big to conquer, and nothing was out of reach. You want the earth the moon & the stars? Let's go get them.
When did that change? Did adulthood and the realities of life sour my perception of the word "future?" Was getting ill and realizing my once strong body could malfunction out of my control create a sobering shockwave of truth? I'm really not sure. At some point the future went from feeling boundless to feeling almost paralyzing.
At 28 I have two versions of the future swirling in my mind, each competing for real estate in my thoughts. There's the picturesque future where I'm healthy & strong, conquering all the diseases riddling my body & riding off into the sunset with my dog. Then there's the future which feels lackluster; riddled with adult sized worries, and a body that is somewhat better but not 100%. Being chained to a laundry list of supplements to get through each day & eating an "everything-free" restrictive diet sounds like my version of a nightmare. I don't want to live a life where a plate of lasagna sends me into a 3 day stomach migraine, or if I forget my mid day supplements I'm up all night sick. I want to eat all the delicious foods to my hearts content without painful repercussions, and go through my days enjoying moments without having pill alarms barking at me 10 times a day. To me, that's not living; that's negotiating with life to just get by. I keep telling myself that CAN'T be the best I achieve. It just can't. That's the future I fear. That's the future which "freaks me out." I only see one way out of this mess, and it's the joyful perfect route that's riding on sunshine. But is that asking for too much? Some days it feels like my ideals have set the bar too high & other days it feels perfectly achievable. These two futures battle one another & no one but God knows who the victor shall be.
Right now my future is in a box, and I view it through the paradox of Shroedinger's cat. This paradox was first introduced to me on one of my favorite TV sitcoms, The Big Bang Theory. It wasn't until much later that I realized how much I would identify with this theory in my every day life.
Simplified, the paradox places a cat inside a box that contains a poisonous vial which is set to break open at a random time. Since no one knows when or if the poison has been released, until the box has been opened the cat can be thought of to be both alive & dead. Therefore while the box is still shut (and the outcome is not observed) the cat is in both states. There is a 50/50 chance that both outcomes are possible.
There are many life decisions & worries which I keep tucked away in such a box. It's my safe space, where I can choose to pick my destiny & see an outcome the way I want it. I'm simply choosing to view the box as holding the key to health & I'm choosing to view my ideal destiny existing on the inside. The future will always be a scary place to someone like me who thrives on knowledge & preparedness. That won't change. But by imagining the outcome I want and picturing my life full of health, I can set goals which I refuse to stray from. Maybe I am asking for "too much" by expecting a certain quality of life back, and that's okay. I would rather dream big & believe that the best IS yet to come, no matter how scary and big it feels.
So until the future becomes the present, I pray. I pray that God gives me the patience and strength to keep taking steps and making progress. I pray that He gives me wisdom and guidance for the hard choices I will make along this journey. I pray that He gives me peace and comfort over whatever future comes my way; and most of all I pray he gives me stillness to quiet the battling voices in my mind & the ability to listen to hear His message.