I was going to give someone a send off of “Don’t get lost!” earlier today (meaning ‘don’t be a stranger’, and ‘come and visit sometime’), but then I realized how much I don’t mean that. I mean, ‘get lost, if that’s what you are meant to do. But come back and visit every now and then, if you can’.
I love getting lost. Both physically and figuratively. Sometimes it can be scary, and sometimes it can suck, but the future benefits far outweigh the present qualms. Being lost is exhilarating; not knowing where you are is exciting. And, afterwards, once you’ve found your way out and you’re back home again, then knowing you’ve got the wherewithal to get yourself back is Most Excellent. I used to get lost on purpose. I’d walk around the city and go places I’d never been before. Eventually I’d end up somewhere I recognized and make my way back to where I was familiar. It made getting lost by accident so much less frightening.
Figuratively getting lost is weird, but also a good thing sometimes. Once you’ve recovered it makes you not only appreciate, but understand who you are that much better. Losing sight of who you are, yes, is probably scarier than not knowing your location, but sometimes we need to be reminded of who we are and who we are not. A friend once lost sight of who she was, it affected our friendship very much. Not having her support or friendship was very alienating and confusing for me. She was lost to me, until she went to visit her mom and sister: they pointed out that she wasn’t being herself. This is why this sort of getting lost is scarier than the other: not everyone has someone who knows them well enough to tell them when they’re not being themselves.
But, even if you don’t, I might still say don’t worry about getting lost every now and then. People are inherently themselves no matter what happens. We’re all still the same person we were when we were twelve we just dress better and talk differently. As long as you know yourself, don’t worry about getting lost. And, if you do get lost, you’re sure to learn something about who you are and what you can be.
So get lost, if that’s what you are meant to do: but come back and visit every now and again, if you can.