There’s something about the fall weather that stirs up a million feelings inside of you. As I’m writing this, I’m sitting and listening to someone playing the piano so beautifully, and getting lost in the music. As I’m sitting here, I can’t help but just think about how lucky I am to be where I am right now and how amazed I am about how quickly life tends to pass you by. I feel like, in a way, we get into this trance- always wanting the next best thing in life, that we never really stop to be grateful for the things we have.
When I was a little girl, I used to dream about being sixteen. I felt like sixteen was the golden age- you’re not quite a child anymore, but you’re not an adult with real-world responsibilities either. I was so obsessed with the fact that turning sixteen meant that you got to get your license and drive a new car. And then, when I was sixteen, I couldn’t wait until I turned eighteen. When I was eighteen, I used to be so excited to turn twenty-one. And twenty-one turned into dreaming about what it would feel like to get engaged and married.
I remember being that little girl who was fearless- who would jump off of her swing set’s handlebars into a baby pool just to see what it would feel like to fly (I’d say that was my first introduction into what gravity was about, as I broke my arm in three places, whoops). She was the little girl, who would beg to get back on her dirt bike after she crashed it as she was learning how to ride. She was the little girl who had such a fierce competitiveness about her, that she hit her first three-pointer in a basketball game to win the game for her team.
But she was also the girl that always fell too hard for people that she cared about. She was always that girl that loved too much and never felt she was loved back. She was always the one that felt invisible when she was lonely. She was always the one who was nice to everyone, no matter how mean they were to her and no matter how much they talked about her behind her back because she was different. She was always the one that lit up a room when she smiled. She was always the one that cared too much but didn’t care because she felt like everyone needed that someone to be that person for them. She always was the one who giggled when she thought something was funny. She was always that girl who wanted to explore life and the world.
I’ve always been amazed at how many people enter and exit from my life. It’s always amazed to see how much people influence our lives. How a kind smile or a warm embrace is enough to make your day so much better. Or how a fight is enough to ruin your day. I think that everyone that enters your life makes an impact they change your life for the better. I’d like to believe that these kind exchanges are about the heart. Life is full of would’ve, could’ve, should’ves of chances you should’ve taken or things you should’ve said when you’ve had the chance to spill your heart’s contents. As Marilyn Monroe, once said, “we should all start to live before we get too old. Fear is stupid, so are regrets.” I’m so thankful for the people who have walked into my life – who have changed my life without ever knowing it. Who taught me that life isn’t always fair, but it’s a beautiful one and that we should always be grateful for it. And that regrets are never as bad as we think they are because something better eventually finds us.
It feels like just yesterday, I was walking across the stage in my graduation gown and hat and starting a new chapter in my life. The past three years have been a whirlwind full of wonderful memories, lost chances, and lost loved ones. If there’s truly one regret that I can’t work through, it’s that I’ve never been grateful for the things that are happening right now. I’ve always been busy looking ahead at things that might not exactly work out the way I’ve always pictured them to turn out, but throughout it all, I wouldn’t change a single second of it. Because I’ve grown in so many ways and I’ve learned so many lessons because of the things that my life has taken me through.
I guess, throughout all of this, I hope you realize that even though life is fragile, but it’s a beautiful one and it’s the only chance we have to be the best people we can be. So love the ones that love you the way you should be loved, take every chance that life has given you, travel the world a million times if you have to, and enjoy what life has given you. Because no matter where you are, I think it’s important that you get there.