Sometimes you can’t help but wonder if all your worst fears about yourself will come true. Like, yes, you will get fat. Not totally obese but just enough for old friends to pity you when they run into you on the street. Just enough for people to seriously wonder if you’re going through a hard time and have turned to excessive eating to ease the pain.
Or maybe you’ll screw up one too many relationships and actually end up alone. It doesn’t seem too far-fetched, does it? If you want to get loved by someone, you have to be out there living life, acting all kinds of lovable. All that stuff about finding The One when you least expect it are lies. The people falling in love have always expected it or, at the very least, wanted it so badly to happen. The people who end up single are the ones that have successfully convinced themselves that they’d like to be alone.
All of these things could happen to you, right? There was a time not too long ago when you believed that the worst-case scenario was very unlikely. You kept it hanging there in the back of your mind only because you had to, because it often motivated you to go in the other, better direction. But then — you don’t know how or when — it changed. The worst-case scenario quickly was starting to look like the only scenario for you.
When did the narrative change?
When did your actions have any kind of permanence?
When did you stop being able to change your luck in the course of a day?
You should be scared. That’s good. That’s what might ultimately save you from leading an unhappy life. Fear either prevents people from moving forward or allows them to keep going after what they want.
Don’t let any of it come true. If you don’t want your life to go in a certain direction, understand that you have the ability to change it. You might already. After all, “understanding something” and “deciding to do something about it” are two entirely different things. It’s amazing how long you can stay paralyzed for, isn’t it?
This might sound weird but it took me a long time to realize that I had control over the course of my life. In fact, I’m still not quite convinced that I’ve realized it completely but at least I know I’m getting there. For so long, I viewed my life as this thing that I could poke and prod like it was a foreign object. I was a baby licking batteries, sticking my fingers in things that I knew could hurt me but I didn’t care. That’s the point: I didn’t care if I got hurt. In my mind, nothing stuck anyway.
Until it did. I think eventually everyone has this moment where they realize that being in charge of your life is the most serious full-time job you’ll ever have. Of course, life immediately becomes less fun when you realize this because you’re old enough to know now that you can get hurt. You know that everything has consequences so you have to consciously live a healthier life which is, for lack of a better word, hard. But, in the end, it’s so much better.
Feeling invincible has its high points. Being naive and stupid and crazy definitely makes for an exciting life but it will burn you out so damn quickly. It will make you feel like the rawest of nerves, crying over silly inconsequential things and never leaving your apartment. Your brain will feel like scrambled eggs, your body like a jellyfish, You know this.
If you don’t like your life, change it. Yes, you’ve heard this adage before and it probably sounded like nails on chalkboard. But perhaps why it’s so annoying is because it’s true. Because you know you’re the one in control here. You might just not be ready to take ownership, which is fine. Everyone’s entitled to a downfall. Just don’t forget to come back up.