It’s impossible not to notice. Practically everything in my life serves as a reminder. The school quarter is ending; the students I’ve gotten to know and care about are moving on. I might see them sporadically – around campus, on Facebook, or elsewhere, and I’ll probably forget their names, even if the faces will be vaguely familiar. The baseball season is beginning anew; another marathon about to commence, another summer lost forever. I see a few relatives today, and it’s been months since I’ve seen them last. Every visit means another quarter year or so has come and gone. Where does the time go? Another day, week, month, year… the numbers build, even if I don’t ever quite feel it.
I don’t feel wiser or more driven or anything like that. I don’t think I’ve somehow developed a sharper sense of focus. But that’s okay – I don’t feel aimless or hopeless or foolish or anything either. The short-term prognostication is fine, and I’ve got enough motivation to do what’s in front of me. I guess I always have, more or less. And while this right here isn’t going to last forever, the trajectory seems good and healthy enough. Questions remain, of course. But a lot of those things are largely out of my control. So I take care of the short term. I do what’s presented in front of me. And if all of that changes, and all of that turns for the worse, I’ll take care of what’s presented in front of me then too.
The laments I have are quite muted. I remain a work in progress, of course, and I still wonder too much about what might have happened in other lifetimes. If I had been four or five years younger (not for the sake of youth, but that of circumstance). If I had felt as comfortable with myself during my undergraduate years as I do these past few graduate ones. And if I could just change a couple of the things that seem unchangeable – an inkling of musical inclination, worldly intelligence, socialibility, and – weird as it might sound – insincerity. But for the most part, I like who I am. I like the kind of person I’ve become. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way, and I hardly believe that I present a model for anybody else. But I’m at a good place right now. Yay.