Sometimes, I get sad when I think about the people who have told me I was the one, then left. I beat myself up, wondering why. What changed; and when. But then it occurred to me this morning that I also thought they were my one, and now that they’re gone, I see that I was wrong. I was just as wrong as they were. Accidentally, of course.
And it made me realize that we don’t always get it right the first, or even the second or third or tenth time around. And that that is okay. That it is a good thing. And to help myself do that, I thought about all of the things I would have missed out on, the things I wouldn’t have become had we never parted.
It took me a really long time -embarrassingly long- to realize that I, unfortunately, do not live in a storybook. That I live in my own skin, in this life that’s right here in front of me. I live in this coffee shop, alone. I live in between the words on all of the pages my ink touches. In the way my smile never fades from the lives it touches. In the way I am unapologetically myself every second of every day; overbearing as that may be. I live in all of the pieces of myself that make me who I am and in none of the pieces of my past, even if they helped me get here, because they’re gone. and you can’t live in something that doesn’t exist.
We are conditioned to believe that everything happens for a reason. From the very beginning our parents initiate this concept always making us explain our faults. Every story we’re read comes with an explanation, a lesson, closure. We’re exposed to proofs in geometry. To analysis & theory in English. To the genetic breakdown in biology. But what they forget to teach you is that sometimes, likely always, the reasons don’t exist or matter in the real world. Just because something happens to us, doesn’t mean we have the authority to ask “why.” The why’s are only revealed in fiction; in stories and fantasies and Fairytlaes; never in real life. Nobody slips in between scenes to let you know why you were just hurt or where you’re headed. In life, things happen and we move forward blindly. And that’s that. He stops talking to you, she introduces herself, you throw up, you board a plane, you run a marathon, you win a game, you sleep the day away, you break your leg, your car catches on fire, you lose your best friend, you give some love, you take it back. And you don’t get to know why. You accept it because it’s your life and that’s all you can do. To remain happy, anyway, that’s all you can do.
You can’t search for the reason(s) behind everything happening to you, you would exhaust yourself. You can’t wonder what could have been done to make it end differently, because once a moment has passed, it is gone; there’s no do-over card to pull. No matter how may times you re-read the nice messages he sent you or the beautiful photos you two took together, he’ll still be gone. No matter how many times you reiterate an inside joke to yourself, your best friend isn’t coming back. You can live your life believing the answers are on their way; running a little late. Or you can put one foot in front of the other and move on without the answers, accepting that the reason something happened is no where near as important as the fact that it did.
And when you realize this, when you accept this phenomenon, it will feel like there should be a standing ovation. Like all the world should stop and congratulate you for growing up. You will wish there were fireworks and sparklers and a judge presenting you a medal. But there won’t be. There will just be you, moving on, and in my opinion that’s the best congratulations there is.
PS. As my father always tells me “Well Myka, wherever you go, there you are.”