Seventeen

“It’s the oldest story in the world. One day, you’re 17 and you’re planning for someday. And then quietly, without you ever really noticing, someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life.” – One Tree Hill, Nathan Scott

I can remember seventeen like it was yesterday. Can’t we all? Maybe it’s that time you snuck out to meet your boyfriend or that first sip of alcohol you choked on. Maybe it’s that cigarette you got caught smoking behind the school. It’s a little bit of freedom meets rebellion meets carelessness but it’s beautiful in a way isn’t it? I can remember that stubborn, proud, headstrong teenage girl who knew everything about life, love, and the world around her. She was a pistol who was ready to take on anything and anyone who stood in her way. She naively believed that she had a plan, that she could control how that plan unfolded, and that life would never surprise her. (Insert laugh here)

Lately I have been seeing life unfold through the eyes of an adult. I have watched friends have children, friends lose children, go through divorces, find their second loves. I have watched blended families become a real thing, I have watched women find themselves after years of losing themselves in their marriages, I have watched them struggle to help their children understand what it means to have two homes. I have come to realize that there is no plan. There is no control. Life and love have a way of knocking us down when we least expect it. We grow, we change, the plan changes, and the future is absolutely unknown.

We associate those struggles as being a negative thing. They come with a stigma attached to them but surprisingly I have also come to learn that is in those struggles, those moments of chaos, that people undergo an awakening of the soul. It is when they truly discover who they are and what they are made of. It is when they find their own power and become the truest version of themselves. It is no doubt a painful process of growth, but what comes out on the other side is truly miraculous. It is empowering to watch. It is a reminder of the resiliency and stubbornness of the human heart, and the world loves a stubborn heart.

So maybe, just maybe that seventeen year old didn’t have it entirely wrong. Maybe the simplicity of it is what seems so daunting. Find what it is that makes you happy, what it is that you love and follow it. Do not let the logistics, budgeting, planning, or backlash stand in your way. Life is fleeting and humbling, it requires that you live everyday to it’s fullest and if you find that you are not doing that, you owe it to yourself to change the story. The only one you have to answer to in the end is yourself and I truly hope that you like the chapters you have to look back on when the time comes. This is it, today, now is the time to live your life. Find what it is that fills your soul and hold onto it as tightly as you possibly can. Do not live your life wishing that you had lived it differently. There just isn’t enough time for that.

Today is the day to start rewriting the ending.

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