I find myself trying to keep in contact with a lot of people who I will probably never see again. I will see someone post something on Facebook and be like, “wow, I really wish I hung out with you more in high school / college / work / whatever” and send some kind of brief message. Usually they respond, though probably neither of us know why.
I moved to a new city that’s way too hot and has way too many people and not enough trains (can you guess what city? I gave you all the clues).
It’s wild to me thinking about how I had an emotional breakdown right after starting college because it was too much, and that was like an hour away from my house. Now I’m in some huge city, just an ant among ants, and it doesn’t bother me that much (it bothers me a little).
But there’s growth there, right? It’s two tangible data points: how I handled change five years ago, and how I handle change now. Things are getting better. I’m getting better.
They say that your perceived life is about halfway over when you’re seven years old. The idea here is that as you experience things over and over again, your perception of time gets faster and faster. As a single year become a smaller and smaller fraction of your total life, your perception tends to see things coming and going more rapidly with age.
The good news is, by the time you’re thirty, your perceived life can’t get much faster so everything just goes uniformly rapid. It might explain why our 20’s are so volatile: we are all still accelerating quicc right before our evening-out point. It makes sense in some ways; like how every year in my 20’s has seemed so fast but also so slow? I feel like I’ve been out of college forever at this point, but when I think back on my memories, they could’ve been yesterday. It’s hard to pin down.
Moving to my Very New City has given me time to be nostalgic in general. I’m starting to get a sense of why people talk about missing college, and I’m falling down the same
I think. It’s crazy, because I didn’t really /love/ college. For my first two years, I was pretty anti-social and focused on classes and my student orgs. For my last two years I became social, and was forced to pick between my classes and my student orgs (I didn’t pick my classes).
At the end of the day there were so many paths I didn’t take. What if I focused on [x] instead of [y]? What if I had gone to that one party I didn’t? What if instead of going to graduation I had thrown myself off the parking garage to spare myself from reminiscing this garbage?
In college I had majored in Political Science, which has only been useful to me in that I use one of my old comparative politics books to prop my window open.
I don’t regret my major any more than I regret anything else, but I sorta understand why people encourage folks to pursue STEM majors. The path is a little easier right out of college I think. I got lucky in more than a few ways, but even still, my 20 year career trajectory is a blindfolded shot in the dark (for what it’s worth, the tarot card reader said I’m on the right track!!!!).
I’ve actually been pretty disenfranchised with our politics recently. More than anything, I feel like I don’t have a team to root for. There’s just not much spirit for the “liberal but not too liberal liberals who still believe in globalization to a degree and kinda think some people on the left aren’t being great” team.
I understand I have blinders and biases in my politics. I don’t think I have all the answers—that’s actually a core part of my ideology, my self-confessed shortcomings and evolutions. Over the last year it’s really occurred to me how much my religion has impacted my politics. I’m not saying this is a good or a bad thing (maybe it’s both) but when you’re someone who reads the gospel, and actually buys into the shit that Jesus says — “turn the other cheek!”; “yeah go ahead and hang me on this fuckin cross because it’ll be better for you” — it’s really hard to generate passion for a political ideology that oftentimes treats human beings just as poorly as our opposite. I’m not talking about oppression or discrimination or anything that relates to institutional power, I am pretty well versed in these topics (remember that PoliSci degree?? ya boi graduated cum laude with honors). I’m just talking about one-on-one human decency. I’m not sure we can build a lasting movement that converts people from the other side of our polarized political spectrum without compassion and the opportunity for redemption, and those sentiments seem to not only be fading out of vogue, but being regarded with contempt and malice.
I think I’m proud of everything I’ve accomplished and all the ways I’ve grown, but the only thing I want to do with my newfound improvements is go backward and re-live my life with them. But there is no going backward. There is only going forward — and at increasingly rapid intervals at that.