Saturday, April 19, 2014

because it's late and i should be sleeping, and instead i am thinking.

i have a not-so-secret-anymore secret.
i wasn't proud of it at first -- i'll admit.

here's the thing:
i went in to college with two ideas in my head.
the first was that i was going to prove that i could
move far away, quickly stumble upon some sort of success, and survive.
survive what? i don't know, life?

my second reason was that i would find some sort of crazy experience.
the kind with horrifyingly humorous scenarios that exemplify my youth.
i had thick skin that needed shedding and i felt that worldly things would
become the tree that i could scratch my back on and shed.

this is all old news.
and so on and so forth.



today my mom asked me a beautiful question.
i don't know how much intent was behind it,
and perhaps she might not even recall ever asking me the question.


but, the words came out of her mouth.
in between breaths, and due to my incessant need to verbalize
how i feel about my life and how i see it, and how baffling and amazing the
little pieces are -- the good and the bad alike.

i don't know if it's because of the season,
because i have words within me now -- words that make me want to take pen to paper and write --
or because it became an argument between jesse and i just last week.

or, perhaps, it's because i'm home.
because spring here the past three, four years has a distinct taste of nostalgia.
because today i told my mom that i'm not fifteen, i'm twenty --
and, boy, i'd be lying if i didn't admit that five years is one hell of a long time.
but that i feel fifteen and seventeen, and i am trying so very hard to not be angry at the
scenarios that have led me down this winding path.

so, back to the question.
she asked me if i felt that her and my dad contributed to why my college experience hasn't met my expectations. had i felt rushed? rushed out. rushed out for better things? rushed out of fear? rushed because in the moment i was seventeen and life felt like it had met its capacity?

"i'm not about to point fingers."
"what's done is done."
"i have been blessed."

"but" {but} "i would go back. i would go back and tell that girl, me, that everything would be okay. that i could be somebody. that i could achieve something. that i could go places."

i have a secret.
a not-so-secret secret.

i won't be living in orange county come this fall.
i don't know for certain where i'll be living, but i have an idea.
and the plan is to stay there for two years.
i'm one for planning, and i'm also one for not sticking to the plan,
but this plan has got to stick because maybe, maybe, i'm getting it right.

i kind of hope that i'm wrong and right.
because, here's the thing i would tell my fifteen and seventeen year old selves.

i would tell them that it all works out.
in the most unexpected, emotional, scattered, beautiful way,
it all works.

i would tell them that nothing was going to go according to plan.
that college isn't one big party, and life isn't something to be afraid of.

i would tell them to keep their eyes open.
to look for the bad in people that don't treat them well, and to run.
to know that people can't be fixed.

i would tell them to take their ap exams because they were capable of grades that
they'd never seen before.

i would tell them that, by the age of twenty, it'd be apparent that they'd probably be a writer.
that they would fall in love with films. films filled with pain and goodness and the human pursuit of a full life. that they would know in their bones that those moments -- those moments written on paper and caught by a strand of film would be the lens that they would potentially need to capture what they would witness in life.

i would tell them that anger is a lost cause.

i would tell them to move to oregon and then to orange county.

i would tell them to fall in love with the man who was the opposite of what they thought they would love in college. to shut up and learn from him a thing or two about life.

i would tell them that they would contemplate more than what their parents at times found bearable.
but that they should keep talking and writing it out.

i would tell them that, by twenty, their biggest regret would be their biggest success.

and i can't point fingers for this. it's solely me.

until very recently, when i would say that i will have attended three universities in three years
my skin would crawl with shame.
the words were hollow and they met the air only to create such distaste in my mouth.

i would look at the lives around me -- knowing that perfection is nonexistent -- and still feel like i hadn't met the criteria...some how and in some way.
i wanted a challenge, a failing grade, a good drink, a captured moment that i could show for.

and for what?
for everyone else.

sort of like two years ago.
sort of like three years ago.

always about other people in all the wrong ways,
and all about me in all of the selfish ways,



to be selfish at twenty has got to be the biggest privilege.
not many are given such a gift -- i realize.

it's selfishness in all the ways it should be:
finding whatever it takes to feel at peace.

for me, it's about peace and purpose.

and so i'm being selfish -- call it what you'd like.
and i'm moving.
and i'm not going to allow my skin to crawl with shame.
and the spring time that brings nostalgia will warm my heart rather than keeping it cold.
and my mom's question, well, i felt rushed out. but in all of the right ways that comes with a loving parent.

two years later, and i'm still getting it all right and all wrong in all of the right ways.
and that's one hell of a success.

i don't know anything about life other than you have to roll with the beautiful, inexplicable alterations and progressions that come with it.

the end.

p.s. writing at twelve a.m. requires some company.

1 comment:

  1. WHAT! Ahh you go girl! I want to hear all about this while we're both in town!!