Most of us know the quote, or some variation of it, “Not all those who wander are lost” and while Tolkien’s words do strike home for most of us, I have to also think about the other side of that coin/quote. Not all are lost, but some are.
We are all lost at certain times in our lives. If it wasn’t for those times when we lose ourselves, we would never be able to truly discover who we are. Being lost is a perfectly normal part of exploring our own natures, exploring the world around us, and exploring the people who come in to our lives. To the outsider sometimes these moments seem like a temporary lapse of sanity, and they can even seem that way to ourselves because it is so often a revolutionary experience. Things inside of our minds and our souls undergo transformations that we were not even aware we are capable of and we sit back in awe or shock of what lies within us.
Sometimes, the change is sparked by a lover; we realize our capacity for loving another, or our inability to overcome the fear of love; we finally understand that we too deserve to be loved; we find new depths of our own sexual awareness and desires. Maybe scars from the past resurface, and we are forced to see how well or poorly we have dealt with them. All of these lead us to better understanding who we are in relation to those we choose to love romantically, and hopefully lead us to better choices.
At other times, the change comes from a place of loss; a loved one passes away or leaves us, and we are left to face the emptiness that their absence has caused; we lose something that we risked in order to try and gain more, perhaps making us realize the true value of what we had or maybe actually making us aware of how we are now truly free without it; our capacity or ability to do something, either physically or mentally, is sometimes altered and we are left to try and find ways in which we can continue being ourselves under these new circumstances.
Perhaps an idea took hold and as your mind worked on this idea, it was changed forever and therefore changed the shape of your life. Our own knowledge is the expanse and limit of our personal Universe and as we learn and discover, losing ourselves in an emotion, a person, a shift in thought, our Universe grows beyond the limit that it had known.
Yes, all who wander are not lost. We wander, we find ourselves, we continue to grow and expand beyond our previous selves. Even when we are lost, it is in the process of finding the bit of us in everything around us, and the expanse of everything else within ourselves.
It’s OK. OK to wander. OK to be lost. OK to be found, or finding. It is all OK. It is all going to be OK.