Sunday

November 14, 2010: is this it?

Recently I had a meeting with a professor who happens to have a knack for palm reading; needless to say she wanted to read mine. Having always been a fan of the openhand-book, I've many times had my palm read and heard everything from how I am a free spirit who will youthfully marry young (false so far), I seek a greater human truth (still looking), my romantic life will be full of possibilities (I beg to differ...). Yes, I've heard the lot of it. But my professor said something that I've never heard before; I have a "teacher's square."

In Palmistry if a square occurs on or near the Jupiter mound then the person is said to be able to impart knowledge effectively to others, hence a teaching profession is ideal and a good fit. I have that, I think. And this talk of teacher's whatevers has made me wonder about my own professional aspirations. What do I want to do with my life? This perplexing question, that taxes heavily on many people's minds and hearts and souls, carries more weight than usual for me. Since beginning my junior year I've been asked multiple times what I want to do post-graduation. I pretend that the thought never occurred to me.

I am not the person I was in high school, which is to say that I do not carry those same ambitions as high school Peter did. In fact, my ambitions have differed greatly from those I had in high school. I wanted to be the next Anna Wintour. I wanted to be a "somebody" who could command the "other-bodies." I don't anymore. The appeal of being a sounding voice in the fashion industry makes me feel queasy and faint. I don't think that makes me weak, though. I'd rather be a quiet force that blows in and does exactly what it means to do, says what it means to say, and effects those it intended to effect. And that's enough for me. The vehicle of this force is up in the air at the moment. That's okay, too.

Thinking of my place in a future world, what I want to do with this life I've got, has made me think about the person I want to be. I realized that the lessons I learn here in school set the foundation for not only the profession I'll go into, but also the person I'll be. This "teacher's square" may actually have meaning and sense if I do end up teaching. But will I be a kind teacher, an aloof one, will I reach any students as my art teachers reached me? Profession aside, will I be a person who reaches anybody? And I spin onward thinking about this undecided person I will organically and eventually become.

But this leads me to my main point and that's that all of this questioning and figuring out and planning has really got me wondering about the physical location I'll end up in. Where will I live? And I think about travel...

I've been to a bunch of places both domestically and globally. I spent some choice summers in Alaska and Costa Rica, an eye-opening Spanish excursion, and a profound experience in South Korea. And I think every time I go some place I try to test out my roots. Can I feasibly ground myself in this place and thrive? Is this place a home?

I have a few theories about adoptees, and I hold this one to be true: adoptees are given a location and are told to make that place work for them, but this means that there might have been a more natural ground they could have grown in and on, therefore many adoptees try to find that place that might have been a more natural fit.

I feel that way 90% of the time.

This is not to say that I believe my home and all that it entails is bad for me. On the contrary, my home is and always will be my antipoison to any bad that afflicts me. But my home, while it will always be my home, may not have been the home that I was destined for. Maybe a home that is more suited to me is elsewhere, and I have to find it. Maybe it's the process of searching that makes a home. Maybe since I did not search for "my home" it will never fully feel completely mine.

I will be studying in Florence, Italy next semester. That marks the beginning of a whole new search...

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