News of the century: permanence is fleeting.
This applies to every aspect of our lives, but I'd like to start with graduation. And no, I didn't graduate – and won't even for another two years.
But, fresh from seeing cap and gown photoshoots literally one after the other on my feed, I remembered the all-too-easy complacency of thinking you have so much time. Time of routine and consistency. Kinda in the way summers feel so long when you're 8-years-old.
It's not that sort of long days, weeks, and months doesn't ever reappear in your life, it just seems to follow you less and less frequently.
Because now, some of my friends are moving away when we kept planning for "next week" to work around booked schedules. It's just like those who moved away from my hometown, myself included. Except now, they might be going back – or not. Maybe they're staying in our college town to wait for "that opportunity" or in a nearby town because they "want to stay close" or perhaps somewhere completely and scarily new. Maybe they were more aware of the lack of time because they were the ones counting down the days, but it still seemed to catch us by surprise. You see, the complacency exists on all fronts, with the one who's moving on and the one who's not quite yet.
We grow comfortable thinking there is always tomorrow – until there's not.
After nine years of relief, my grandmother's cancer came back. I was struck by the news with a phone call from my dad on my way to school on a really warm Wednesday afternoon. I didn't cry at first. I didn't jump to conclusions. I was just stunned. While my body refused to purge any emotion outwardly, my brain was already shooting off so many questions, so many frustrations with myself because I believed I had taken what I'd always had for granted.
But, I left too. Almost two years ago, I drove down a narrow back road with a hand-me-down SUV filled to the brim to stay put until everything I left changed. Here I am, nearly halfway through college, and I can safely say that the time is passing quicker than I ever anticipated, but I couldn't find this exact experience for myself anywhere else. Sometimes we have to leave. Sometimes it's in our best interest. It hurts like hell, but it's not forever.
It's something I struggle with as I calculate the complexities of maintaining connections I make everywhere I go that must stretch miles and miles from city to city. While this is often feasible, the simplest solution in this very moment is to stop the counting.
Take everything that you're given and do your absolute most with it without pondering whether it'll ever be replicated.
And we're bound to fail with this; we love to beat ourselves up over the things that we cannot change in the past, despite the nonsensicality of it. But, we must keep looking forward. Our permanence together in this life may be passing, but I know there is also something eternal for us as well.