On Nostalgia
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On Nostalgia

I don't miss scootering back and forth in my driveway for hours while I played pretend in my head, but I miss being the person who would be entertained by that for hours.

On Nostalgia
Julia Stevens

It's interesting how nostalgia works. More often than not when you're missing something, you don't miss the thing or the time, but rather the you you were when those things were a part of your life.

I don't miss scootering back and forth in my driveway for hours while I played pretend in my head, but I miss being the person who would be entertained by that for hours. I miss the mind I had that was unweathered by more interesting and exotic things, and I miss being less educated. Because, as is said, ignorance is bliss and I could still enjoy "Clifford the Big Red Dog" without the worry I'm not doing enough to culture my mind.

It's also interesting, to me, how when we're younger we talk about our careers in the future as what we want to 'be' when we grow up. Once we're grown and making small talk at a family reunion what we ask is what is it we "do." And I have to wonder what it is that causes the change of phrase.

Is it that we desperately want to embrace our multi-dimensionality? We want to let the fireman be more 'man' than anything else, allow that we 'do' accounting, but we also have a riveting past and a winning personality?

Or is it that we've lost the enthusiasm of our youth, and no longer wish to be associated with our actions; what we do no longer dictates who we are; or maybe it does, but we want so badly for our actions to not define us, when there are intentions, unfulfilled dreams, we'd much rather have done so.

Or maybe it's just a natural change in inflection. "What do you do now?" seems pretty meek, compared to how forward it would seem to look at an adult straight in the eye and say 'what are you now'?

Maybe I'm looking too hard to find a meaning in something that is really nothing, because I'm growing, and I can't accept that life is just about living and nothing else, not when I've learned so much. I'm nostalgic now, for when I was younger, and when I knew how to just... be, without the inclination to find a pattern in everything. That was before being turned into doing and doing turned into making mistakes, and making mistakes turned into learning, and I'm still so young, how can I know what I want to be if I don't even know who I am?

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