Things are different now.

29 Apr

When I was a teenager, I was sensitive. I still am, obviously, but it’s different now. I’m not sensitive to the same things. My coping mechanisms have changed and different, bigger, things break my heart.

In high school, people broke my heart. Boys, or one boy in particular, broke my heart (over and over and over again). My world was little. Itty bitty, really. Harsh words, the wind blowing the wrong way, too much of anything would wreck me. I cried. A lot.

Now, world hunger breaks my heart. People and animals and environments being treated unfairly breaks my heart. Cruelty, of any sort, wrecks me. But I don’t cry anymore. I gave that up. Instead, I fight and change and work harder. I’ve found it’s a lot more effective that spending Sundays in bed crying.

As a teenager, I was fairly invincible. I could eat  what I wanted without getting a stomach ache and without gaining a single pound. I could sleep anywhere, without waking up sore. I could ride roller coasters without losing my lunch. I could do all sorts of shit I can’t do now. Now, if I eat too much processed, greasy food, my stomach freaks the fuck out. I can’t ride roller coasters. I have to sleep on a bed, with a pillow, if I want to wake up feeling refreshed. I have allergies. I gain weight if I don’t exercise. My invincibility has waned. It’s faded. Now I have to think before I act.

It’s just different now. Everything, really. I stop and marvel at it sometimes. At the things I’ve done, the things I wanted to do, but haven’t, the things I know I’m going to do, the things I thought I’d accomplish, the friends I thought I’d have. Even just in the past few years – things changed when I hit 25. It was a mile marker I hadn’t made plans for. There weren’t expectations. Somewhere, while lamenting all the things I didn’t get to do before I turned 24, I forgot to plan for 25. So 25, and now 26, and expectation free.

I spent years (and years and years) planning for who I would be when I “grew up.” Now, I’m not even convinced that’s a real thing. I put a lot of thought, in my early 20s, into my life plan but my life went off on another track and I never set the milestones back up after they crumbled.

I wonder if I’m living in the now more than I ever have before. I still plan. A lot. I plan for vacations and for next month and the next BIG THING. But I don’t have a five-year plan. I’m not sure if that’s okay or not. I mean really, what would I put on it? I own a house, have a husband and two dogs. I don’t want kids, so there’s no planning for that. I want to put granite in the kitchen. And I want a canopy bed. I want to graduate from college, but that will come soon, in the next year or so. I want to travel more, of course. I want to make more friends, have more adventures, but in the realm of GREAT BIG THINGS YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO DO BECAUSE THEY SAID SO, is this it? Have I checked the “necessary” boxes already? There’s always a next, so what comes next?


6 Responses to “Things are different now.”

  1. san April 29, 2010 at 11:09 AM #

    Boy, did you hit the nail on the head: things are different. A whole lot different what I expected certain things to be when I was younger.
    It is quite strange sometimes to think about it.

    You make all those plans when you’re younger and you envision what your adult life is going to be like and then – it all goes a different path.

    Maybe living in the NOW is not a bad idea after all.

  2. StaceyParadise April 29, 2010 at 1:13 PM #

    I’ve got a tentative 3-year plan, that really just boils down to: get out of credit card debt, continue to update our home, then eventually put it on the market, travel to Italy and hopefully Greece, and make smaller trips around the US.

    BTW…Are you going to be attending the Race for the Cure on May 8?

  3. aly April 29, 2010 at 1:25 PM #

    I have the wedding plan.. but that’s taken a LONG time to become my next. Otherwise, I guess my next next (ha!) is moving home and settling down?

    I think you have accomplished so much already – maybe your next should be nice and vague, and to stay happy and loving whatever DOES come next!

    (I think I need some sort of trophy for gross overuse of the word next.)

  4. janet April 29, 2010 at 5:44 PM #

    I think once you’ve checked off the main boxes (education, home, partner, children (or not)) then you have you just start creating your own categories beyond that. And I think a canopy bed is a great one! 🙂

  5. Margaret April 30, 2010 at 11:28 AM #

    You’re on a good path.

    Don’t pay any attention to what society says you SHOULD do. Tune in to God’s plan for you and Andrew. It’s your lives, not any one else’s.

    Keep nourishing your relationship with Andrew.


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