I sat next to a young couple that had made their way across the Atlantic to Europe. I knew because they spoke Spanish and had just told me two minutes earlier that they were from Patagonia. They were young and married and they were now going to travel through Europe for six months. We sat somewhere in the Latin Quarter with all the tables facing the road and I drank café noir and I sat by myself because I had come to Paris on my own.
How do they do it? I asked myself. They are married; they probably have financial obligations, don’t they? What about work? Did they have to quit their jobs to hop on a plane and travel the world? What about their parents, what did they make of all this? Surely their parents did not encourage this? Or did they.
Vocation comes from the latin word ‘vocatio’, which means ‘to call’, or ‘summon’. Look carefully at this word, because this word is the bridge between career and life. This word challenges you to become who you know you are suppose to be. This word enables you to dare and be courageous and make crazy mistakes so that one day, you’ll have a beautiful story to tell your grandkids. This word is your passport to a life where values, memories and grace are most important. E.E. Cummings said, “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are”. I want to add ‘wherever you are’ at the end of that sentence. No matter how old you are.
There is a difference between your job, career, occupation and vocation. Join us as we try and explore all the possible outcomes of a life filled with opportunity and anticipation for something great to happen.
I finished my coffee and went for a walk. I was happy as ever. I knew this could not last, but I have found what makes me happy and that was enough. In my notebook I had a quote that has changed and challenged me entirely throughout my own process of vocational exploration:
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” – Rainier Rilke