Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A look into your past

So, I've stumbled upon a very old "blog" of mine recently. I'm unsure if blog is really the proper term to use.  I think something like "The self-absorbed rattlings of a 21 year old who thinks they know it all." There's a lot of talk about feelings and boys, and one boy in particular. (I thought I was going to marry him... Thank God I didn't marry him To say the least, I was getting annoyed with myself the more I read. Thankfully, like many projects I start, I abandoned it a few months after I started, so the torture was short-lived.  It's kind of funny though. If I flashback to 21, I remember stumbling upon my livejournal account from high school and thinking, "Oh the teenage angst, how could I have ever been so stupid?" Funny how we're so critical of our past selves,  because we've all been there, we've all done the stupid things.

But it makes me wonder, 7 years from now in 2021, will I find myself once again stumbling upon this blog, reading through it and "facepalming"? (Future me, if you're reading this, yes the term Facepalm is an actual thing and yes you used it cause you thought you were cool... I wonder if Facebook is still around?) I wonder if I'll laugh at myself wondering how I could be so preoccupied with the minor trivialities I let my life become obsessed with today.

But not matter how painful it is to read back on my own stupidities, it's also very refreshing to see the transient nature that life is. To realize that our pain is temporary. That our happiness is temporary. That our stress is temporary. That our success is temporary. That our hate is temporary. That are love... can be temporary. It punctuates the importance of releasing the negative and embracing the positive. If our pain is temporary why devote so much time feeding it. If our happiness is temporary why not more time experiencing it and maximizing. Why torture yourself with all the worry, stress, and pain when you have the opposite at your disposal? I wish I could have told myself this years ago. As I always say, hindsight is 20/20.

If you're one of the small subset of random people who are reading this, I have an assignment for you. Go back 5 - 10 years, or to an age that you had once considered significant, and find a piece of personal writing. It's not as hard to do as you're telling yourself , electronic records and technology were abundant 10 years ago, I bet you can find something. Read whatever you find a few times, then write a letter to the past you with whatever recommendations, compliments and thoughts you have to offer your past self and save it. Likely, one day, there will be a past you living in the future... Your daughter or son, who at age 21 is self-absorbed, lost, and fixated on a boy or girl they can't let go. You may not know exactly what to say to them, or how to say it, to help them out.  But maybe one day you'll remember that you did a silly little thing such writing a candid letter to your 21 year-old self that can  be of some guidance. Think of it as an alternative to starting a conversation with "When I was your age...."