Ohhh. How I long for “back when.”
Every so often I go through these spurts where I really miss the life I had. I don’t necessarily — actually no I am certain — I do not wish that my life was any different now but rather I think I wish that I would have cherished being younger more than I did. The news has recently been touching on this movement called #DearMe. A movement focused on the idea that if we could go back, we would all have something to say to our younger selves. A little piece of advice we learned as we grew. I think it’s a really neat idea. I think there are an infinite number of things I would say to my younger self. A million lessons I would try to teach her. I would star with this: don’t worry about the silly nicknames you’re given (granny panties, myka-no-boobs) one day you’ll have a hotter, nicer, more well-together boy than any boy at your high school. Don’t worry about not being the prettiest girl on campus, one day you’ll learn about make-up, and hair, and right-fitting clothes (one day when you’re old enough). Don’t worry about not having the most popular friends, & not being a cheerleader, in college you’ll be funny & find meaningful friendships with people in your major. Don’t worry about missing the parties down by the canal or out in the country, you’ll find your true alcohol-binge-acceptable friends when you’re twenty-five (and they’re much more fun). Don’t worry about not having that boys jersey, or sex, or a brand new car. And Myka, don’t fight with your mom.
I wish that when I was younger I would have been able to see the life I would create for myself. This post high-school, post college, life I’m currently living. I wish I would have been able to save myself some tears and stress. But who’s to say I would be the same person had I learned my lessons earlier than I did? I’m willing to bet I wouldn’t be the same me that I am today had my life gone differently. And the person I am today is quite fascinating.
On the other side of the coin, though, I think there are a lot of things about my past I wouldn’t change, or that didn’t completely break me as a child and teenager. Things I wouldn’t have to warn myself about, but instead make sure I paid extra attention to; enjoyed just a little bit more. And it’s these things that make me nostalgic. It’s the running through the sprinkler on a hot summer day, eating popsicles on a warm towel on the hot cement, staying out past dark with the neighbors playing capture the flag; It’s the college basketball games, the jogs across campus, the 20 hour work weeks, and morning sprints to McDonald’s. It’s these, these moments of pure joy, lacking all adult responsibility that almost make me wish I could go back.
But then I look at today. I see my hott boyfriend. My black, leather interior, sunroofed, imported car. My own apartment in a place where it snows. My 401K, benefits included, stable job. My pet. My real friends; the girls it took me 24 years to meet, that I don’t know how I ever lived without. And it’s when I look around at these things that I wake up, so to speak. These things, these current events and treasures, bring me out of and away from living in the past. Make me remember how beautiful the present is. Remind me that hindsight is always 20/20.
I wish that I could have this mindset that I have right now for all of eternity. I wish that I could always remember how thankful I am for my past, how grateful I am for my present, & how excited I am for the future. I know that I won’t be able to always be this optimistic. There will be fights, and drama; broken hearts & broken cars; flu’s and germs and worries & fear.. But in the midst of it all, there will always, always, always, be one thing. There will always be me. And I think realizing this common denominator (literally, just now as I sit here typing away), realizing that I will always be there for myself, that I will always be on my own side; will help me accept my life, instead of fighting it. Instead of creating a commotion, instead of trying to keep all of my ducks in their respective spot, in their respective row, maybe I will be able to let things be as they are now that I know I am enough. Me. All on my own. I am enough. I always have been.
Recalling the past & foreshadowing the future are, in my opinion, hopeless endeavors. It’s impossible to go back, and it’s equally as impossible to jump forward. It is only feasible to live in one time; the present. & maybe as that old cheesy cliche states, once you do, you’ll realize the present really is a gift.