On living in the present.
April 3, 2012 § 2 Comments
“For just one second, look at your life and see how perfect it is. Stop looking for the next secret door that is going to lead you to your real life. Stop waiting. This is it: there’s nothing else. It’s here, and you’d better decide to enjoy it or you’re going to be miserable wherever you go, for the rest of your life, forever.”
Lev Grossman, The Magicians
Sometimes I wonder if all I’m ever meant to do is wait for the next big thing to come. Okay, I don’t wonder about it or wish it upon myself so much as fear that this might be the recurring pattern in my life, the groove in the wheel that I’ll forever be stuck on. All this web-surfing, this blog-reading is making my miserable ethics essay seem even more and more miserable. Of course these beautiful sunshiney days we’re having doesn’t help one bit either.
I’ve always been the kind of girl who looks forward to what’s gonna happen tomorrow. The Scarlett O’Hara type that says, “After all…tomorrow is another day.” The kind of person who asks ‘what’s for dinner?’ five minutes into breakfast. I’ve never considered it a good thing, it never will be. Knowing this doesn’t make this tendency any better. A few months into uni, I found myself wishing for things to speed up and just end already. It ended, I came back for more, and here I am, back to where I started – wishing for things to hurry up and just finish already. I know it’s wrong to just always be waiting for life to start, I know this. Life is meant to be lived in the present and all that. But I also know that anticipation and expectation of the future is the only thing that gets us through, the only thing we have, sometimes.
But I don’t want to want anymore. I want to sit here and enjoy writing this essay, working on that statistics assignment. I don’t want to keep thinking, debating with myself whether this is where I’m truly meant to be at this point in my life – working towards another degree that I see no foreseeable use in the future for, except maybe for having a professional (?) advantage over somebody else, all things being equal. I want to stop wondering if I would’ve been happier out there in the real world, working and toiling, learning from experience, instead of a book.
I know myself. If I were out there, I’d probably be wishing for the next vacation, the next trip, or else, to be back in the safety and ennui of schoolwork. Is this the human condition? To keep desiring and wishing, reaching for what isn’t there in the present, only to miss it keenly once it’s in the distant past?
Sometimes I absolutely hate where I’m at. And sometimes, I’m perfectly happy thinking away, getting an(other) education. I just wish those sometimes would turn into all the time, and fast – before this year and this degree ends and all This turns into just fond memories.