I was looking everywhere for the damn thing. I looked for it everyday, almost every minute. I knew I couldn't live long without it, so there was urgency. I cried because I didn't know what it would look like. What if I missed it? The longing lived in my touch, in my hugs and kisses. With my body, I searched. With my spirit, I watched and waited.
I thought that school would give it to me. Or maybe a man. People told me I should model, so I thought I'd find it on a runway. It wasn't there either. I kept waiting for someone to reveal it to me. What now? Where else could I look? I asked God only because I knew I was supposed to, but I never waited for an answer. I was anxious, I was stubborn, so I wandered.
Motherhood? So much beauty. But no, it wasn't there.
Job? Nothing. Not even a spark.
Money? Yes! That must be where it is!
I threw myself into every make-big-money venture I could tolerate. The damn thing wasn't there either.
The moments kept me going. The butterflies. When someone came to me for advice or comfort, I felt something. When I diffused an argument or changed the energy in a room from tense to peace, there was a quiet knowing. Calm was a power I'd always had but never valued. Once I packaged my calm into written words, something shifted.
Soon I gave in to my butterflies and paid attention to what made me feel at home, no matter where I was. I began to care about how I could make the world better in my own small way. That became my priority -- to be a source of joy for myself and my territory. Maybe I'd never find my purpose, but I decided to be a good sport about it. I would focus on being a kind person. I would help other people cope and feel seen.
That's when it came to me at last. Quiet and familiar, like my prayers and my butterflies. Everything I'd searched for, I already had. It was there. It was always there, just waiting for me to see it, water it and let it bloom.