As you know, I’ve been thinking a lot about life lately. Probably because I am at such a crucial stage in it. I’m at the crossroads, if you will. I can choose to go a million different ways and each path will lead to a different life. And it’s scary and I don’t want to have to choose. I just want to stay where I am and freeze everything and give myself more time.
But unfortunately, as I’ve realized, life doesn’t give you more time just because you want it. It gives you a set amount of hours each day and a mysterious number of days on this planet and it’s up to you to do what you want with the time that is given to you. One of my favorite songs right now is Stop This Train by John Mayer.
“Stop this train,
I wanna get off and go home again,
I can’t take the speed it’s moving in,
I know I can’t,
But, honestly, won’t someone stop this train?”
Life is going too fast for me. I’m not ready for my grandparents to grow old; I’m not ready for my big sister to move out; or for my parents to get grey hair, or for my little sister to be in her twenties. It’s as though time has played a cruel trick on me – I looked in the mirror and suddenly noticed that I’m not that little girl with the braces anymore.
They say that life gets faster as you get older. Faster and faster the wheels trudge along and I feel like everything around me is becoming a blur. The world is spinning out of focus; I’m trying to look out the window and enjoy the view, but as soon as I start to make sense of where I am, the train turns a corner and my eyes are forced to readjust.
I guess it scares me. It scares me to think that everything I have right now is going to be gone one day. It scares me to think that everyone I love has a timeline and that the timeline is approaching closer and closer…that these days will one day just be distant memories. “The good ol’ days,” I’ll say with a sigh as I flip through the photo album with a nostalgic gleam in my eye. I’m trying to make the most of every day and appreciate life as it is right now – the sound my dad’s footsteps, the look on my mom’s face when she comes home from a bike ride, the touch of my grandma’s hand – but it still hurts. It still makes me feel sad, and wistful, and unsettled.
Every year on my birthday I feel a little bit sad because I feel older but not a whole lot wiser. In a couple of days, I’ll be 23. This year I will older and wiser because just like John, I’m beginning to realize that no matter how hard I try, I’ll never stop this train.