Adrift

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Adrift: (adj) 1. of a boat or its passengers, floating without being either moored or steered. 2. Of a person, being lost or confused.

You see, I think we have a quandary. We have to learn how three words are quite different:

  • Uncaring
  • Bohemian
  • And peaceful

When I graduated from high school, I didn’t want to be normal. I had studied “normal” through twelve years of the educational system. Now, I was not critical of it. Those who found it appealing were not my enemies, but I did not get in line to take my number, waiting to be “the next one served.”

I found myself adrift. Those around me believed I was uncaring.

Not knowing what to do, I basically chose to do very little. Truthfully, I didn’t do enough to survive–at least, financially. The critics rolled in their opinions. Family was enraged. Friends deserted me.

I was on my boat and decided to float for a while instead of feverishly paddling or hooking some sort of motor up to my life so I could troll the waters of existing social acceptability.

I knew what I liked. I liked music, I liked performing and I liked writing. Was I good? Honestly, it was difficult to find out because I was always dodging the bullets of my pistol-packing townsmen, who were determined to “gun down” my laziness and put me back into submission with the grown-up way of thinking.

Yet I resisted.

Because I didn’t paddle and try to resist the tides and currents, I bumped into a lot of things, did some damage and appeared to those around me to be Bohemian.

“Adrift,” by definition, connotes a loss of control. But you see, I believe the GREATEST loss of control was giving it to someone else, who held my life as a timecard and asked me to punch in for permission to eat and breathe.

It took me about eight years to finally blend my motivation, talent, purpose and opportunities together, to come up with a lifestyle which was acceptable to those around me because it possessed some sort of pay stub.

I never resented those eight years that I was adrift. They were painful, often stupid, frightening, lonely and occasionally enlightening. They gave me the determination I needed to set a course and right my ship in a direction to follow my dreams instead of toe the line.

So even though “adrift” may seem to be a negative posture for any vessel, be it nautical OR human, for me, it was an oxymoron: a meaningful aimless quest.

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