This place is incredibly peaceful. I was only spending a part of each day on the job search; the rest has been a beautiful mix of cooking and eating amazing food with my mom, walking on the beach, trail running through Tod Inlet, or biking the whole peninsula with its farms and hills and Garry Oak. We buy eggs and tomatoes straight from the farmers, and in the evenings we play Scrabble and watch The Mentalist, maybe visit with our 93-year-old neighbour. Feels like I’ve been here 2 or 3 weeks, but it’s actually been 9.

I should be actively engaged in all sorts of architecture-related activities: to lose the momentum that I gained in the last year of school could put the whole plan in real danger. I’ve learned this about myself: I’m happy with hard work, but I need structure and a little bit of pressure around me before I’ll get down to business. I do well in school and work settings, but here on the island I just drift in a lazy slumber, feeling slightly uneasy that I should be doing more.

This is my biggest obstacle, bigger than not getting a work term position and even bigger than not having the money to pay for next term: I self-sabotage. I don’t fully understand it, but it involves resistance to getting started, resistance to conformity, resistance to learning specialized details, and a weakness for distraction… those are symptoms I suppose, and underlying all of them are some pretty complicated self-esteem issues. I spent my twenties and early thirties building my confidence, so I’m surprised to find these things still have such power to derail me. In that context I have to wonder if not getting the work term position was truly just rotten luck, or if my actions played a part. The truth is I didn’t feel ready for it, so maybe that’s why it didn’t happen.

I can change who I am; I’m in the process of doing that every day. But it’s slow change, like decades long. Rather than trying to magically awaken one day as a totally different person I need to find the path that works for who I am right now. In my case that path seems to be the scenic route: I can walk it meandering and unhurried, only vaguely interested in the destination, but dazzled by the people and the sights along the way. Just as long as I really do get somewhere, someday.