Have you ever felt like your life up to this point has been part of an elaborate dream? Like the choices you made were part of a sequence you could not escape? I ask, because decisions I’ve made in the past are not at all what I would choose for myself now, not even close. It’s difficult not to feel unsettled, even overwhelmed, by this realization, without reminding myself that I am here in this moment, realizing it for myself. (It’s the equivalent of getting unplugged in the Matrix…that movie is a lot deeper than I gave it credit for). One might naively define this as personal growth, but in some ways I’ve also taken steps “back,” so let’s just call it personal change.
Now, I couldn’t possibly see myself committing to a significant other as the person I was. Now, I am rediscovering my “creative” side, wondering how I ever lived without it for so many years. Now, I am seeing friends and family for what they are, leads in their own stories, not supporting roles in mine. And I am grateful for all of the missteps that have led me to this realization now, with time left to embrace it.
I feel a comfort of clarity in my uncertainties, because the person making decisions feels as close to me as ever. Life is still a work in progress, but at least I get to spend time learning myself in the process. I can be anxious, sensitive, and irritable, but I’m also thoughtful, perceptive, and humble (thought of that one because I’ve been staring at this sentence trying to come up with a third compliment that isn’t braggy…nailed it).
I cannot help but worry though (anxious, see above), that my future self will sit down to write a letter not much different than this, explaining how else I was “getting it wrong.” Perhaps that time won’t come, but if it does, I’ll be ready for another dose of the red pill. For now, I feel peace in the presence I’ve developed. I don’t feel like I am waiting to live.