Growing Up No Pain, No Gain Right?
Growing up has been a difficult path for me to embark upon. At the age of 27 I am not exactly where I pictured myself to be, however I have never felt more passionate about my purpose in life. Unfortunately my recent journey upon the path of growing up has encountered more pain than gain. I guess I am writing about it because I feel as though there are a lot of people my age are struggling with growing up amongst a time where Facebook knows more about us than we know about ourselves.
How do I know I am growing up? Well I beg the big man above to send me back to a time of scraped knees and bee stings. Although I don’t quite know the purpose of this blog, I realize it has been a long time since my fingers have hit this familiar keyboard. In fact it has been a long overdue pleasure that I have been avoiding. Why do I avoid the things that bring me peace? Well we all have our own inner demons to battle don’t we? Growing up is something I have resisted for a long time. Denying the bad credit pit that I threw myself into 6 years ago. Ignoring the inevitable, that I would eventually lose someone I love. Above all not appreciating the simple things that the foundation of my life should really be set upon.
A few days ago I was having a talk via text message with a good friend. A new friend, but nevertheless we have come to rely on each other and it reminds me that we are never given more in this life than we can truly handle. Sure you might not be religious but I have had too many “coincidences” to not believe in a higher power. As I have said before it is your choice, this is just my story, by no means is this path right for you, however pieces of it may help you find your way. Getting back to the conversation I had… For this piece let’s call the person Bill, since my brother seems to insist on renaming my 5 and a half year old dog that… Bill and I are in the same boat. We are workaholics who submerse ourselves in more than we want, not because we have too financially but because we have too emotionally. My inner demon is that I fear growing up. I love to avoid and run from my problems, I fear facing them. I bury them, within the deepest confines of my soul. However this year the big man above sent me a mirror, in the form of my friend “Bill”. I have never met someone who avoids their emotions in the same sense as I do. Avoiding relationships, insisting that we don’t have time to date when people ask us. If we do date, we find a way to sabotage the relationship, ending it before it even has a chance to start. Personally I have noticed that I just love people I know will never work out in the long run. Pursuing the inevitable is easier than opening myself to the unknown I guess.
Well as fate would have it, this lifestyle has finally caught up to me at the age of 27. Bill is having the same issue I found out recently. My advice to him was to just say “F*ck it.” Sorry I really don’t know how else to phrase it. Give it your all. It hasn’t worked avoiding your emotions, so use them, harness your passion, relinquish all your reservations and open your heart. Because after all you can bury love, hope, hurt, pain, fear, happiness under a numbing sensation, however you cannot maintain it. A human soul burns with life and eventually these emotions will surface. Whether it be in a few days, weeks, months or years, they are going to rise and kick you square in the face. Leaving you feeling confused, empty, alone and wondering what the heck you have done to yourself. You see Bill and I have been living our lives like this. Rather than facing our problems we run from them. We’re fast but fate seems to always be one step ahead. Ironically it placed the two of us face to face and I have never seen my faults more than since I have met Bill.
The last few years I have watched my Facebook become my social life. I used to write, exercising my emotions onto paper and than with the technological advances onto this blog, the BQB. My curiosity was fed, as my imagination powered my fingers upon the black keys of my mac. Why I stopped who knows. I claim I got too busy, but really I think I allowed myself to get too attached to my work, feeling insulted when pieces that I poured my heart into, intelligent and witty works, suffered miserably according to Google. However I forgot the main reason I began writing, my passionate endeavor was that every piece would have the ability to either change mindset, awaken an inner child, kindle curiosity, or drive another passionate person. My one piece would make a difference in one life. I got lost in the numbers though. I didn’t understand how my piece on dating that took me 3 hours got more hits than the piece on the nuclear power plant in Tehran that took me 3 days of research and revising. My ego was bruised and rather than continuing on my original endeavor I bailed completely on a venture that had proven to change me for the better. Story of my life.
Another thing about me. I forget sometimes that there is more to life than work.
My grandfather passed away on November 3rd of 2012. He was above all the single most important person in my life. When he had gotten sick, rather than avoiding him, I faced the cancer with him, unable to leave him alone in his battle against the tumor. Prayer and hopping onto the LIRR became a weekly ritual. I fought for my grandfather, opening myself more and more to an unconditional love that I had never wanted to find. However it found me and to be quite honest I have hidden from it until writing this piece. Rather than facing the reality that there would be a day that he would no longer be there, I enjoyed the days I had with him. Sharing my life with him, sending him simple words of faith and love, summoning my inner strength to smile even when I just wanted to cry, wishing upon countless stars and above all believing even when everyone else had lost hope.
I still don’t believe he is gone. When I moved back in May of this year the thought of going by his house crossed my mind. My friend Danielle was in the car with me as the tears came to my eyes. Really? I hadn’t yet accepted he wasn’t there? Then I thought about it. I never had a good cry about it. I never let the pain and anger overtake me. Instead I ran from them. I am still running I guess as I choke back tears writing this. How do you say goodbye to someone you never wanted to lose? I didn’t. Rather I filled my schedule with work. I made myself so busy that I don’t remember the last time I took more than a day off to just relax.
Growing up has been painful. But it has also been rewarding. I have learned valuable lessons over the last few years that have allowed me give others advice that I never had. It has allowed me to appreciate what I have right now, to know that the best days of my life are yet to come. I battle everyday to face my weaknesses, to turn them into my strengths. I will never lose faith, I will always hope and above all I will begin to write again. My grandfather would have wanted that. He said I was destined for greatness. Luckily I have a pretty amazing angel looking over me now.
Growing up sucks. Let’s not sugarcoat it. However I look forward to pursuing my dream career of being a successful host of a television program, finding that guy, my future best friend that I will spend the rest of my life with and crossing off every item on my bucket list and also helping my family reach some of theirs.
Listen life is what we make it. It is never harder then we can handle. We are given the tools to successfully navigate the waters, however if we insist on ignoring the approaching storm than we are only doing ourselves an injustice.
To all of my peers who are feeling life’s turbulent waters, hang in there. Here’s a little quote that helped me when it became darkest.
Face the storm, ride the waves, and above all remember eventually the sun will shine. It always has, and it always will. So here’s to the sun, here’s to you Pop, my mentor and my muse, and here’s to growing up.