You know how people always ask, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” When I think back to being asked that, I think of who I was 5 years ago. Who was I? I could never answer that question. I never had a clear path of where I wanted to go, I just kind of winged it. Sometimes that was a good thing and some times not so much.
Let’s start with 10 years ago. Who was I 10 years ago? In 2007, I was in the 10 grade. Looking back, I don’t really remember much from my 10th grade year. Most of my friends went to other schools in the 9th grade, so I was left alone to figure out how to do things without people I knew well. Who was I, though?
In the 10th grade I was very vulnerable in the sense of dating. I didn’t care much about making friends but I was on a path to find someone who loved me for me. Since a young age, I knew what love was and what it felt like. I’m a very empathetic person, it gets in the way a lot too. I would say that I didn’t cling to people but if I cared about you I made sure that I never made someone feel alone. I’m still like that in a way… I want everyone to feel like they belong.
I feel like 2007 was just one of those transition years. Nothing really exciting happened but a lot happened all at the same time. There is pretty much something I remember about each year of my life but I can’t recall anything for this year… maybe I was empty. Empty because a guy I liked was cheating on me or ready to be done with school because of bully teachers I had.
When I say bully teachers, I mean those teachers that were just insufferable. I had one teacher that would get so annoyed if students didn’t ask questions during class, but as soon as they would ask a question she would tell us we were stupid because what we were learning was easy. How about the time I got a 0 in my math class because the teacher said there was no way I could get the grades I was getting so I must be cheating. She said I was cheating off people who had grades worse than mine. How does that even work? I hated it.
So, who was I 5 years ago? 2012 was a new chapter in my life. Actually, not even a new chapter… it was more like a sequel book. I started dating a guy who didn’t have anything together. I was 20 and had my life together a lot more than he did and he was 5 years older than me. No car, living with parents, etc. Honestly, that’s not even awful to me. What sucked was that he wasn’t doing anything active to progress his life.
All he did all day was smoke weed from the time he woke up until he went to bed. For someone who doesn’t drink or smoke, it was a boring relationship. He ended up breaking up with me because he couldn’t handle a relationship. Without going into extreme details because you’d be here for a while reading, I met an awesome guy after him and started dating. I lost 2 good friends that year due to misunderstandings, lies, and just plain stupid drama.
That pretty much sums it up without going through the petty girl drama. The guy I started dating, we stayed together and he moved. He moved away and that was the beginning of a 7 month long-distance relationship. 5 years ago, I was asked by a professor where I saw myself in 5 years. I couldn’t answer him. I shrugged and said I had no clue.
Never in my life did I see myself moving in with my long-distance relationship, let alone now we’re engaged and getting married this year. I never saw myself living in Charleston for 4 years. I never saw myself being in as many galleries as I have, owning my own business, connecting to so many wonderful people, etc.
Who am I now? I feel like I’m much more knowledgeable than I was 5 years ago. That only comes with age, right? I don’t want it to be that way for everyone. A small mission of mine is to help people no matter what. If they’re needing advice with galleries, I’m there. If they need someone to talk to, I’m there. Anything and everything, I try my absolute best to be there no matter what. I don’t want people to go through some of the things I have. I can’t help them all but I try my absolute best.
This leaves me with the same questions. Where do I see myself in 5 years? Just thinking of the year 2022 is blowing my mind. Not only will I be 31 years old, which I go through life crisis all the time I can’t even imagine when I get there, I will hopefully still be without children, my fiance’s business going well, married, living in Costa Rica, swimming in the clear waters all day every day, and continuing my photography forever and always.
Photography is something I will never give up no matter how hard life gets. At least I hope I don’t give it up. All I can do is take things one step at a time.