It’s funny how sometimes the smallest action, thought, sounds or smells can send you down memory lane. My wife and I were heading home after picking up a pizza and I decided to go a backway. This backway used to be how we would get home from picking up the same brand of pizza when we lived in our old apartment almost 3 years ago. “Hey honey, do you remember when we used to…” she finished with “drive this way every time we got pizza for date night? Yes, I remember”. We have been married for 3 years now. We spent the rest of the night reminissing of old times that aren’t old, new times that seem old, and then all the possibilites of the future made possible by all the actions of the past. It reminded me of how even when the toughts of the past may send chills up our spines because of some super-embarrasing and life altering moment, the past puts exactly where we need to be. Though we very rarely see it that way.
When I think about my past, I remember very few good times and a lot of rough times. I have a lot of blame assigned to people and choices and situations along the way. Until a few months ago, that blame is what I clung to and used to validate where I was: 26, in school for 8 years and still counting, stressed out, angry, blah, blah, blah. You all know the story… It took 2 random acts of violence in the community that caused what I am calling my “blame pedestal” to crumble and I crumbled with it. I felt truly lost and broken. From that state I was able to talk to people and for once actually understand everything my wife had been telling me since the first we met: I am ME. It is ok to hate the past, fear the future, and yes even have strong negative feelings toward the people who helped put you in that state. What you really have to work on is recognizing that all that is ok, you are human and normal, and all you have to do is make yourself happy. Happy doesn’t mean shopping spree, though I am told it helps! What I mean by happiness is acceptance and growth not complacent and sedentary. The past is one giant lesson learned and a kick in the pants… Use it to figure out your likes and dislikes, your hopes and dreams, all the little future “what ifs” and then dive right in and experience life! You will find that your past experiences having given you most of the tools you will ever need.
Remembering all those converstions and self-realizations brought up more memories, some old and some new. I’ll shiver at a few of them I’m sure, but for now… I thank God I have them and pray for many more.