I listen to music to feel nostalgic of my glory days. If only the bass can pump through my body the same way as when I was sixteen and rolling around empty basements because I told Mom and Dad that I was staying at Lauren’s when I was really drinking with the senior boys who thought they could get it in. Such a shame I’m such a prude.
I want to feel as fearless and hopeful as I did when I was seventeen and all of my teachers reminded me that I could achieve anything if I worked hard enough and wanted it bad enough. “Write for the moon and sing for your lover. Never say no. Be lively.”
I want to feel like my dreams can come true rather than filing for taxes and divorce right after bringing home the milk from a 9-5 job in a cubicle where I only imagined the rejects sitting, but now it’s me. Now it’s me.
I want it to be what I know. I want my intelligence and intellect plastered like a resume on my skin. I don’t want it to be about bold lips, toned legs, and who do I have to sleep with to sell a script around here. “It’s about who you know, honey.” I will never appreciate that.
I crave going back to the years where I was praised for even participating and awarded for being mediocre. Maybe this is why it is such a struggle to work hard and diligently for anything anymore, because glory is not as sweet when it’s all that’s expected of you. Mistakes when I was 18 were a “learning moment.” Mistakes now are shameful.
Letter jackets and homecoming sashes meant everything during those four years of confined public education, and now it’s not even important, let alone relevant. No one cares what I once was: acclaimed jock, theatrical genius, homecoming princess, student council president, cliché choir bunny. No one cares.
What am I now? What am I doing right now to fulfill my teenage fantasies? How am I striving to excel at my self-worth? Would the ten-year old me be proud of the twenty-year old me? Would I be thrilled to know where my path is headed? Are my shoes, shoes that want to be filled? If the answer is no, I should evaluate why. I am capable of so much, but if I don’t even attempt my ambitions, I am the only one to blame. I complain about irrelevant successes, because I don’t allow myself to soar as I once, so easily did. I am not even in the air anymore. As I age, I walk, slowly, timidly observing my surroundings, overly cautious so I won’t fall. How can I fly again if I’m too afraid to get my feet off the ground?