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What does it feel like to be lost in life?
Growing up, I always thought I knew who I was. People often talked about finding themselves and I wondered how it was possible for you not to know who you were. If asked, I'd say that I'm Saidah and I like to do this, this, this, and that. But the older I get, the more I wonder if there's not more to it than that.
I've struggled with finding a path my entire life. My family always pushed me to go after my dreams and supported me in any endeavour and so I went after them all, one at a time, of course. I pursued cooking because I liked to cook, I pursued baking because I liked to bake, and I pursued American Sign Language because I wanted to learn another language. Every single thing I went after, my family supported me all the way but after a certain point, I don't feel the calling I think I should to any of these pursuits. Maybe I'm a sampler, I want a taste of it all, but trying new things doesn't get me any closer to a career and I'm currently 22, it's time to pick a path.
Time and time again, the paths I've chosen have all been over writing. Humber College wouldn't allow me to take their novel writing course so I took cooking instead. American Sign Language (ASL) was a harder program to get into and a longer program so I chose that over screenwriting at Toronto Film School. Time and time again, my writing has come second and I try to tell myself I'm choosing both by taking writing night-classes but it doesn't feel that way.
As my program gets harder and my ASL skills — in my opinion — don't improve, I find myself wondering if this is truly the path for me after all. Everyone says they can see me as an interpreter, that it'd be a great career for me but they've said that about all the rest. Who am I in life and where do I see myself, really?
I'm starting to understand what it means to feel lost, to feel unsure of who I am and what my path is or should be. I don't want to be in school for the rest of my life, sampling things, I don't, but how else will I find something that'll stick? To be a writer is one of those jobs that unless you're famous, you have to do on the side, you have to have another job and that's why I've pushed it off over and over again but maybe I need to stop pushing.
I don't know what my future holds, I'm still figuring it out. Maybe ASL needs to be a side passion while I pursue something else, maybe I should try screenwriting, who knows. All that I do know is that I am Saidah Vassell, whatever that means, and I'm lost and confused. I am Saidah Vassell and I'm on a journey of discovery. I don't know where it stops, I don't know how far down I've walked, but I've got to keep going unless I want to feel lost forever.