Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Decisions. Liverpool Vs London

I am a terrible decision maker. I know that. Generally most of my decisions are made without much thought, a split-second decision. The last major decision I can remember making was when I decided to stay in Liverpool after my job at Clatterbridge finished. That was a really hard choice. I definitely felt a strong push from God to stay in Liverpool and put some roots down. Every instinct in my body was telling me ‘no, keep going keep moving don’t stop don’t settle or let people in’. But I decided to stay and things have worked out in their own little way. Friends that I have made in the past 6 months have told me I’ve changed. I’m not sure how exactly but they seemed to indicate that it was a good thing.

Now I need to make another decision except this time I am actually trying to put some thought and effort into it and am just going round and round and round in circles. My mind changes almost every 5-10 minutes. Sometimes this is influenced by who I am speaking to, but the advice I have received comes from people of a range of backgrounds, different ages and have known me for various lengths of time, some Christian some not. There isn’t any particular pattern in terms of what other people say or recommend that I should do.

I know it is important to seek wise council, and that what other people say can be an important part of guidance and directing. Ultimately the choice is down to me, but after many many weeks of debate and prayer and tears at times and frustration I am no nearer a decision about whether it is better for me to stay in Liverpool or whether I should go to London for uni. I know there is no such thing as a right choice because either way things will work out somehow. Different opportunities will come up either way which will naturally take you down different paths.

This is the first time where I am actually considering staying in one place and not moving on, and that being one of my preferred choices. Previously I would be fighting to settle, seeing it as a weakness in myself. I think that is one thing that has changed in me in the past 6 months or so, letting people in. I think I’ve prided myself on my ability to just keep moving and not get attached in any way, and pride is never a good thing. There is a huge part of me that wants to remain living in Liverpool, at least for the time being. How long, I don’t know. But for a longer period of time than the 6 weeks remaining until University would be due to start.

It’s quite frustrating actually because I feel quite peaceful about either of my options. Naturally I have doubts or concerns and you wonder how you can actually manage to survive. Neither option is perfect or without its flaws. For example, if I go to London my first semester will be 5 full on days a week, some days 9am-9pm at night. Intense. Which would make it quite difficult to find the time to work outside of studying, so obviously financial strain would play a bit of a part of that. Not to mention having to pay for the degree in advance and then general living expenses for rent, food, transport across one of the most expensive cities in the world. I’m not worried about money because I know God will provide in whatever situation I land myself in, but I don’t want to be blasé about it either.

But then in saying that, if I was to stay in Liverpool I don’t particularly have any financial security here either. My current position finishes at the beginning of September. There is a high likelihood that either this one or the hospital I was working at before will ask me to do additional work, but no guarantees.

London wise, I wonder whether this degree is really what I want to do? How motivated am I? Can I really honestly concentrate properly to study right now? Do I even want to do this degree? Is this really a career that I want to get into? I don’t have answers to these questions. Even my motives for wanting to get into international nutrition itself I question. I wonder whether it is actually something I want to do, or is it more the concept that I like, the idea of a glamourous adrenaline filled life. Maybe I have changed more than I realised. I still want to travel like I used to, but the desire is no way near as strong as it used to be. It could be a maturing process, just realising how much friendships and relationships are important to being human. I’m not sure where my passions lie anymore.

These past 6 months in Liverpool is probably the most that I have ever settled down, and in saying that I haven’t really settled yet, or am only just beginning to now. For years I have been living out of suitcases, my car(s), backpacks and never really been in a place that felt even remotely like home. I love the mountains back ‘home’ in Sydney but that didn’t mean I necessarily felt ‘home’ there. I think it was more a place of familiarity and comfort. You know everyone, they all know you but does that necessarily make a place home? I don’t know. I’ve confused people before talking about home because I’ve generally just referred to who’s ever house I was staying at that night, or if at someone’s house for a meal or something referring to their home as my own. Over familiarisation perhaps? I have had millions of ‘homes’. Well maybe that’s an exaggeration, but quite a few.

In asking advice from people I’ve had a few bible verses be sent through to help. This one in Jeremiah has always been one of my favourites. In the midst of a life that has had no direction and no idea where its going or why, it’s good to know that God is in control and has a plan somewhere even if I don’t.

I have it all planned out – plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. Jeremiah 29:11

Yesterday at church there was a brilliant message by one of the young men in the church. A couple of points really stood out to me. “Only dead fish go with the flow”

I guess with everything I have done in life it has almost always been just see what happens take it as it comes, very much go with the flow. I don’t want to be a dead fish, I want to be living with purpose and direction. The problem is I just don’t really know what direction I should be facing. I’m at a fork in the road with each path looking identical. Yesterday I was given the advice that I shouldn’t really think about making this decision so much, just make a decision. I guess it’s a bit more complicated than that though.

Anyway. Just thought I’d clear out some of the doubts and thoughts circling round and round and round and round in my head. Thanks for listening to my rant.

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