Contentment. Why is it so hard to hold onto?
I’ll be honest. Even though I waited and waited to become a real Peace Corps volunteer (19 months in total) just about as soon as it became official, I was ready to check it off the old life list and think and talk and dream and plan about the next step. Where will we travel after we’re done with our service? Where will we live when we return to the States? What jobs will we have? When will we start a family?
I don’t think all these things in fear of not yet having the answer, but out of excitement for the future! Let’s dream and plan and imagine what could be! And when I realize what I am doing (or more likely when Isaiah points it out to me) I like to choose between these two excuses: a) It’s responsible to have a plan, or b) I’m just dreaming because it’s fun. It doesn’t hurt anyone, does it?
But maybe it does. Maybe it sucks me right out of Yuty, Paraguay and puts me in a nice, spacious, clean-lined and clutter-free house with a spectacular patio and huge windows that showcase the beautiful open land on one side, cozily tucked in a cluster of trees on the other as our two perfectly behaved children recite their ABCs in Spanish. (Oops, am I doing it again?)
Can I blame it on my generation being so over-stimulated that we actually have to teach ourselves how to do just one task at a time? And it’s a difficult lesson to learn since multi-tasking used to be (still is?) the gold star in the look-how-busy-I-am-but-can-still-manage-it-all showdown.
When I dream of my ideal life (that’s still allowed, right?) I imagine, more than anything, complete contentment. But how do I hold onto contentment without toeing the line of complacency? How do I hold myself back from getting more excited about what will happen tomorrow than what could be happening today?
Ok, nope. Those aren’t rhetorical questions. Although I am happy and overall feeling content in Paraguay, I struggle with these questions. So who has the neat and tidy answers for me? Lay ’em on me and help a brother out.