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Choosing Between Lives

June 16, 2009

I wish I had time to do everything. Depending on the stimuli around me and the ideas and memories in front of me, what I want to do and where I want to be changes every moment. It’s not a discontentment with where I am…only a frustration that I physically cannot be everywhere at once, experiencing everything.

  • I want to be here, close to my family, my favorite places, my church, my friends.
  • I want to be in the Pacific Northwest, learning how to hike and live in a city that has more breweries per capita than anywhere else (I do believe Portland has this claim…or one similar.)
  • I want to go to seminary/graduate school and learn more about this faith and life that I love so much.
  • I want to be back in England so much sometimes that it feels like a sickness that will never go away.

I don’t know how to choose. Pray about it, I suppose. Realize that I’m barely 25 (in two and a half months) and that I have plenty of time to do all these things…I think. I realize that being in this place that I love with these people that I love could never be a waste, but I’m anxious to do it all, especially knowing that I cannot ever possibly “do it all.”

How do I choose between the lives that I long for and love?

14 Comments leave one →
  1. you know permalink
    June 17, 2009 3:23 pm

    One of the best things about life is free will.

    Do what you want to do, and don’t leave it all up to praying.
    If there is somewhere you want to be for a while, go.
    You don’t have to do it all at once to do it all.

    It just takes more doing and less thinking about doing.

    Choosing does not mean praying and waiting for an answer. There might not be one. Make the best choice for your life taking into consideration the things you really want to do.

    You cant really make a bad decision unless you start doing hard drugs or something stupid. Where you end up will only open doors and such.

  2. Caroline permalink*
    June 17, 2009 4:42 pm


    Well, I don’t pray because I think there is one answer. I just want to share my thoughts and ideas with God and hopefully, through all of that, along with the advice of those around me, come to a wise decision about what the best next step is.

    I don’t doubt that if I did any one of those things that I could find fulfillment and happiness. It’s not about finding “one right answer,” and I don’t plan on sitting around waiting for one.

    Someday, I hope to get to all those things. It’s just my impatience that I want to do it all at once and not wait. But I want to wait…I like where I am, and I want to get the most out of it until it’s time to move on elsewhere. For once, I’m not scared of these options. I’m intrigued by them.

    Just musing on the unfortunate condition of being human and being unable to be omnipresent.

    Love you.

  3. June 17, 2009 7:50 pm

    I’ve been to England, but only as far as the Heathrow Airport.

    I lived in the PNW for a little over a year.

    I’ve been to seminary, and hope to go back to it (it’s in the PNW) before the year’s up.

    I really have no desire to be here, except that this is where my family is.

    I think that if the timing is right, and the circumstances are right, you should just jump in and do it, with prayer, of course. πŸ™‚ Just my two cents.

  4. Caroline permalink*
    June 18, 2009 8:13 am


    Thanks for the two cents. πŸ™‚ I will try to spend them well.

    But on a serious note, I am glad for all the encouragement I receive on here. I can confidently say that for now, I am where I want to be. But someday, when the wind changes, when an opportunity presents itself, I want the courage to step into the next chapter.

    And I think I’ll have it. πŸ™‚

    (And I hope you get to go back to seminary…you’ll have to tell me what it’s like.)

  5. James permalink
    June 18, 2009 11:13 am

    I understand your problem. I feel the same way quite often. There are many paths I envision in my head, and there always seem to be new paths that sprout up every day because of my new experiences. I see myself in so many place, doing so many things.

    What I have found is this:
    I love to travel, even alone at times, but always because I can come back and share it with someone I love.
    I love to push the limits and put myself in extreme and sometimes difficult situations, but possibly because I can come back to a place of comfort.
    In leaving home, I can see it more clearly, appreciate it more, really know it and see that it is truly my home, not just a place on earth, but a substance in my blood.
    There is something deep and holy, almost mysterious in the roots of family, friends, and home.

    As cliche as it is, I have found that it is not where you are but who you are with that really matters. Though, that does not always limit you to “home” if you can go out and find those that set a spark you in, the people out there that you do not know yet.

    The one beautiful thing I have found about adulthood that few people realize, is you can literally do anything want. I could walk out the door of work right now, drive to South Dakota and sleep in the badlands, watch the rain storms sweep across the plains. And in the grand scheme of things, will much change? I wouldn’t have a job, or a paycheck, I may loose my apt or my car may break down. But these things are so minuscule and not a part of life. the real things, such as love, never leave, for it will never leave your side.

    I don’t know where I am going with this. Back to coffee and back to “work”. One day my words will be looking me in the face.

  6. Linda Lyzenga permalink
    June 18, 2009 6:18 pm

    So, Caroline, have you ever heard of Mars Hill Grad School? Check it out here –
    Here’s a thought for you – combine #1,2 & 3 above as Mars Hill Grad School is in Seattle. There is also another Mars Hill Bible Church in Seattle and perhaps new friends await you there….

  7. Caroline permalink*
    June 22, 2009 1:45 pm

    @ James!

    I agree — I travel so I can see the beauty of the world around me, but also, so I can come home.

    I think we all have too many lifetimes we try to squeeze into what little time we have. At least I know us two do. πŸ™‚

  8. Caroline permalink*
    June 22, 2009 1:45 pm

    @ Linda!

    This is so odd — I have only looked at one grad school so far, and it was that one. I saw an ad for it in a magazine and it caught my eye. It’s one I definitely want to keep in mind. Thanks for thinking of me! πŸ™‚

  9. Linda Lyzenga permalink
    June 23, 2009 11:05 pm

    hmmmmmm – very interesting.
    If I were in your shoes – knowing what I know about it, I’d be there in a heartbeat.
    Threee summers ago I went out there for a writer’s conference. Check out Dr. Dan Allendar’s book TO BE TOLD.

  10. Caroline permalink*
    June 24, 2009 8:21 am

    That is so interesting! I’m really glad to have a positive recommendation of the place, so it’s one I will definitely keep in mind! πŸ™‚

    And I’ll have to check out that book too!
    Thanks, Linda!

  11. June 25, 2009 12:29 am

    You should definitely go to Mars Hill. The church and the grad school. I’ve never been to the grad school, but I can say that that Mars Hill Church is super duper awesome, and judging by its website and its catalog (not the best way to judge, but still), the school looks really cool.

    I hope to move to Federal Way (about 20-25 minutes away from Seattle) before the year’s up, so you will definitely have a friend (and possibly a roommate) should you choose to visit or live there.


  12. Linda Lyzenga permalink
    July 14, 2009 9:05 pm

    Hi, Caroline
    It is very apparent that an opportunity for you to share with me about Mars Hill Grad School was missed Sunday evening. I’m sorry about that & would love to hear more!
    Do you have my email?

  13. Caroline permalink*
    July 15, 2009 8:59 am

    Your email is listed along with your comment, so I will definitely email you about it! Thank you so much for your encouragement and listening ear in this. I can use all the wisdom and guidance I can get. πŸ™‚

    Grace and peace,

  14. Linda Lyzenga permalink
    July 15, 2009 10:25 am

    I’ll look forward to hearing from you…

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