live through this and you won’t look back
September 5, 2010
I’m so glad it’s the weekend. I needed a break. from work, from the city, from drama, from people. I’m back home in downingtown, visiting family and hanging out for the holiday weekend. With my two little sisters away at school, my 17 year old brother Dillon is here alone with my parents. He needs rescuing sometimes, haha.
Anyway, coming home this weekend got a lot of wheels turning in my head. Got me thinking about a lot of things. Recent things mostly. Causing me to examine decisions i’ve made, things i’ve done, how I’ve changed in different ways. I moved around a lot in my younger years, so “home” has always been where my family is at the moment. but coming home usually gives me a refresher course in “where I’m from,” so to speak. I’m reminded what has made me who I am, what’s important to me, my values, and the things that make up the foundation of who I am as an individual. I’m starting to realize in the past year I’ve made compromises on my values I regret, exchanged what I probably knew in the end wasn’t the best choice, for what seemed like a good choice with potential, I ignored my gut instincts, I’ve extended patience and grace to individuals that never repaid in kind. I gave second, third, and fourth chances only to get burned each time. I’ve learned harsh lessons and probably come out wiser, a bit bruised, and slightly cynical here and there.
This post isn’t mean to sound like I’m moping, I’m really not. Just ruminating over things. Moving into DC has me sort of re-arranging some things in my head and my life and adopting a sort of “clean slate” mentality. My health and diet for example are undergoing changes for the better.
I think maybe being around my parents gets these ideas bouncing around in my head too. I think i’ve gained great perspective in some ways and we can talk as peers and I can see the wisdom with which they tried to guide me in so many ways and I am so incredibly thankful for that. This is not to say I don’t believe they made some mistakes along the way, but I’m not a perfect son just as they’re not perfect parents. but I digress. I guess in a way I’m coming to a realization that I’ve wasted some time in the past year when I could have been focusing my energy on more lasting things, relationships, enterprises, etc. Maybe this is part of growing up. I turned 25 a month ago and instead of having a quarter life crisis, getting drunk as a skunk, and making poor choices…..for a week or longer…..I started re-evaluating my life, analyzing choices I had made or was making and asking myself if certain things were actually beneficial to my life and my future in positive ways. Some of this had to do with relationships, some had to do with habits, some had to do with plans for my own future and where I see myself.
I’m reminded when I come home to visit my family how much I want one of my own. How I have great memories of a happy childhood and how I want to experience that from this side of adulthood. I look at my parents, still working out the kinks together and laughing everyday together and enjoying each other and it wakes me up to the fact that my personal relationships need to have purpose to them, because ultimately I want to settle down with someone too. This afternoon my neighborhood had a block party with lots of food and booze. I’m still carrying a food baby from it all. First time i probably had alcohol in my parents presence, which, if any of you know me or my parents you will know is kind of a big deal. Even bigger was that my dad and I had a beer together and chatted over it all, which, was a pretty big first for me, seeing as neither of my parents have had any alcohol since before I was born. Anyway, my dad got up to get more food and my mom was looking around noticing all the young families that had come to the party and just made a face and looked at me and said, “David, I want grand-kids, all my friends have grandkids but me.” With my brother leaving next year for college, I don’t think she’s ready to have an empty nest. But I reminded her that knowing myself and my siblings, she’s probably going to have to go through the hurdle of a wedding before she gets any grandkids. haha. i’ve seen a change somewhat in her and my dad, in understanding and perspective, as it pertains to me and other things too. Which encourages me more than just about anything.
Maybe this in itself is my quarter life crisis. Me contemplating the white picket fence, the dog, the husband, the 2.5 kids and a 2 car garage. Am I getting “old”….or just maturing? Am I giving in to some societal stereotype on how a man’s life should be led? or am I just ready to be in a different stage of things? i’m not saying I’m ready to buy a house in the country by this time next year, settle down, start a family, adopt kids, dogs, a rigid schedule, and accept middle class mediocrity. Some people crave “danger” and “risk”; I’m realizing I want stability, on both an emotional and physical level. from people, and from my surroundings. I’m realizing I dabbled in a little bit too much instability recently, and all things being equal, I’m glad those days are behind me. I still want adventure, and excitement, and carry a spontaneous attitude in my heart, but I also have matured enough to know that while while “all things are permissable, not all things are beneficial,” and I need to keep that clearer in mind in the future. I’m hopeful about things. Very hopeful. I should have listened more to my friends’ advice on some things. Sometimes other people can see into your situation in ways you can’t, but your judgement is clouded in a way that doesn’t allow you to agree, at least in a way that gives you the will to act accordingly. There’s something to be said for living purposefully with no regrets, not in an arrogant “do what feels good” sort of way, but in a directed and mature way that examines motives and attitudes and potential outcomes of decisions down the road. We all live and learn I guess. Well, some of us do. Some of us are stuck in vicious cycles we may never break free from. All I can do is examine myself and make sure I’m on solid ground with my decisions and my path.
I wanted to insert this awesome song by the band Stars, called “Your Ex-lover Is Dead.” been stuck in my head recently. Listen close and enjoy.