I am constantly making plans, contingency plans, and contingency plans for my contingency plans, yet no matter how much energy I use to control life—life unfolds outside of my grasp. Life has the tendency to blindside me when I become too wrapped up in my feeble plans, and the jolt reminds me how little I truly control.
In September I was blindsided, literally blindsided. On my drive home from school a man ran a traffic light and collided into the driver side of my compact car, knocking me unconscious. In a brightly lit room I gained consciousness, and the doctors told me I was in an accident, and I had a small amount of bleeding in my brain. The speech pathologist recommended that I not read, watch TV, or use a computer; so I spent my time simply thinking. For more than two weeks, I remained trapped at home thinking about school and my future.
I had to see this unpredicted event as a forced pause in life. For as long as I can remember, I have strategically moved forward with one of my many ambitions, but my ambitions shattered in the same moment my driver side window disintegrated into a blanket of shards. For the first time since childhood, all of my pursuits and dreams faded into the periphery of my mind. At first, I scrambled to retrieve my scattered ambitions, and with shear determination I attempted to fit all of the pieces back into the same neatly organized configuration. I just wanted life to return to normal, but I soon realized that something had changed.
I had received a new perspective and fresh start. For reasons I can’t fully articulate, I have decided to change my current trajectory and pursue a few ambitions that I had previously labeled as too risky. In my endless pursuit to control life, I used to neglect any idea that flirted with failure. The next season in my life is all about cultivating the ambitions that I once neglected. This season may end swiftly with a bruised ego, but it could also lead to a healthier life. I am embarking on an uncharted course that could lead me back into the familiar fold of architecture and graduate school, but first I must see life beyond my safe and calculated plans.