Life Is Now So Let's Begin

Life Is Now So Let's Begin

Until we're climbing up those Tibetan mountains, life is now. This is life.

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Ghost of years past

Trying to remember my childhood is getting harder and harder and that scares the heck out of me to be completely upfront with you. When I reminisce I find myself with less and less to go on and sometimes I think my brain must be getting too clogged with all of this unimportant information in the grand scheme of my life and what should be at the forefront of the file cabinets in my brain, like what others are doing on social media or what kind of bird flew past the window the other day. It was a great blue heron, for your information. And all of that is fine and well, except for when I think it's giving me some retrograde amnesia over here.

But sometimes I'll find myself remembering bits of the past, like that time that stands out to me from when I was six; I was helping my mom re-mulch the garden beds, sitting on the stacked high bags like the princess and the pea, except with mulch, singing "American Pie" with my mom at the top of our lungs until I said the lyric "mortal soul" as "moldy soul" and my mom laughed for a year. Literally a year, she's probably still laughing honestly. Maybe that was the best year of my life. Maybe that was the best memory. Or maybe seventh grade was the best year when I dressed up as Alexander Calder and made a mobile to hang from my presentation board in all primary colors. Very "La-La-Land" now that I think about it.

Ghost of years present

The other day one of the best people in my world made a video and captioned it with the quote "do any human beings ever realize life while they live it?-every, every minute?" ( from Thornton Wilder, super sick name, my guy). And I realized, no, we probably don't. We're always waiting for something to begin. Waiting for the new year to start our diet, waiting for the check to come to buy the new gadget, waiting for someone to text you back. But these are trivial waiting periods. The waiting that really does us dirty in this game of life is waiting for your life to begin. It's like what Rapunzel said in the best movie ever, Tangled, when she crooned "when will my life begin" out her tower window.

And okay, Rapunzel, I get that your case might be a little different, what with the fact of being trapped a few hundred feet up in the sky for most of her youth but for the rest of us, our life is happening. Right now. This is life. When you sort your whites from your brights or pick out the best deal from the array of cheerio look-alikes in the cereal aisle, that is life. When I think of living, I tend to think of jumping out of airplanes over a volcano in Hawaii and scaling mountains in Tibet. Which, don't get me wrong, sounds like the best kind of life ever. But until then, life is now. So it's our job to live it, remember it, recognize it, and cherish it with everything we've got. And maybe this is the best year of my life, too. While I'm still just out here sorting the whites and the brights.

Ghost of years yet to come

I'll end this with the best of intentions for these elusive years to come. May every year be the best year, may each and everyone hold memories that cannot be replaced, not by anything. May we be present and aware of our lives and our actions, and may we live to the fullest of our abilities. May we all love a little more. May we all hug a little more. Because it's all about love, really. Loving where you're at, loving who you're spending your life with, loving yourself, loving this earth. It's all love.

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.
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Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.


Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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There Is No 'Right Way' To React To A Shooting

Everyone is different.

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After the shootings this year in New Zealand, Brazil, and close to home for some of us Aurora, people have been reacting in different ways. With some offering their thoughts and prayers, donating money to help pay for the funerals of the victims, fighting for action in regards to ending gun violence, candlelight vigils basically anything that can help them in this time of grief.

There is no right or wrong way to react to a shooting — everyone grieves in their own ways. We should not judge one another for how we grieve in a tragedy.

People have been saying that thoughts and prayers won't do anything. However, maybe it can be a comfort to some people—a way to let people know that they are thinking of them and that they care.

Sometimes people may want to donate money or blood to help out any survivors who may have suffered from blood loss or create GoFundMe accounts to either help out with medical expenses or to pay for the funerals of the victims or even start charities like Islamic Relief USA. Donating your time and money is a good way to help out because you are making a difference that is a form of action you are taking.

There is also grieving in the form of vigils. One example of a vigil is this guy who makes crosses every time there is some kind of tragedy. Vigils are often a good way to remember the victims, to pray for the healing of the survivors, to talk about what they were like as people.

Some people even want to take action by demanding that the laws change a good example of this would be March for Our Lives, which happened after the Parkland shooting last year. This march was fighting for gun control or should I say changes in the gun laws America currently has.

Some people also do acts of solidarity, for example, wearing a hijab like the prime minister of New Zealand did when she went to go visit the Christchurch shooting survivors. My community college had something a couple of years ago called Hijab Day to help show solidarity with our friends. I participated, and it was quite an experience—no one should ever be afraid to be who they are.

There is never a right or wrong way to react, and no one should ever criticize one another for how they react. It's not a test where there is a right or wrong answer—everyone is different and that is okay.

No one should ever have to be afraid to go to school, go to work, or go to their place of worship or wherever they decide to go. Whatever we decide to do to make a change, as long as we are taking some kind of action, is good enough for me.

Nothing ever gets done by sitting around and doing nothing, so whatever it is you do, get out there and do it. As long as you are showing support it doesn't matter how you show it.

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