A new direction

Marcus Oldham

Marcus Oldham

3 mins read

Describe the time in your life when you felt the lowest. How did you see through it?

After graduating high school, I followed the traditional path and enrolled in college to began my secondary education in a new town. But I was shocked at  how miserable of an experience it would become. I really hated being in a new city with people I was very different from. I usually felt I processed and looked at life differently than my peers and that I enjoyed life differently than those around me. Sadly, because I was from a small rural community in the Midwest, certain interests, passions, and mindsets I had weren’t possessed by others around me. It was a lot of country music and drinking cheap beer for the sake of being drunk that I held no identification with. I was really isolated and felt exceptionally alone after being prom king in high school just a few months prior. Because of my school tuition debt, I didn’t make it past the first semester. I had a 3.7 GPA in high school and had to drop out and began working in a local factory doing some of the most mind numbing work that I thought could exist. I was pretty emotionally distraught throughout all these changes and transitions going from what could be considered a model high school student, to emotionally isolated in college, to then feeling that any and all potential I had was being being wasted and discarded in a factory. While I had confidence in myself, I quickly learned no one in the “real world” gives a shit about potential. Results and actions matter – What can you produce? What can you give? What value can you create? It was the beginning of a very rough coming of age. After six months in the factory, I reached one of the lowest points in my life as I can recall crying myself to sleep after having my ass beat by life. 

What’s interesting is because of all that pain, I knew I needed a major life change and I was willing to do something drastic. I enrolled in a spiritual awakening school in California and left in a matter of months. At 19 years old, I was a small town kid who loaded up my car and fundamentally changed the course of my life with no real solid plan.That process certainly had many challenges that came along with it, but it was one of the greatest decisions of my life. From the highs and the lows, I learned at a lot at a young age, and it came from hardship, adversity, overcoming. While I don’t enjoy tragedy or pain, there really is redemption in it all if you’re willing to let it make you into who you need and want to be instead of replicating your pain for the rest of your life. The Midwest is notorious for being an emotional trap that people hate but can never leave. I’m grateful for escaping my pain and heartache, and I’m even more proud of who I’ve become since.