There are times in life where you stumble upon something and are left with uncertainty, disbelief, and confusion. Today while browsing the isles of Target’s book section, I came across The Opposite of Loneliness, and was left feeling uncertain, disbelieving, and confused. I stood there amongst authors, poets, and prose, holding tightly to a book I had heard about, seen, but had never opened. Within entering the first few pages I found myself in tears. Now I do often cry in books, good cards, cliche jokes, and a multitude of things, but for some reason this was different.
At times I often feel as though I am feeling too much for a situation, that my feelings are dangerous. I opened this book without expectations, without anything but the knowledge that the author had died. I was immersed instantly into the the words her friends and former teachers had written about her, connecting deeply with the reality that she was my age, she was a writer, and she had a vision that was dimmed too quickly. I think too often we wander around with a sense of immortality, believing in the tomorrows and next time’s, believing one day we will see that place, tell him we love him, or follow the dream. The reality, we don’t.
The average life span of a human is 78.5 years. I can sit here and think that is a long time, but I would be lying. There are trees that live for centuries and turtles that float for over 100 years, yet we feel immortal. As a want-to-be writer, I often find faith in the idea of my words holding some type of permanence, of my ideas and stories speaking past my own life, yet now I am not so sure. I find myself holding back, putting things off for the next morning, telling people my dreams, yet thinking they will come with time. I am not a grape, and my life is surely not wine.
We all have heard the phrase carpe diem. We have all said it once or twice, but when is the last time we woke up and went to sleep satisfied with knowing that we had siezed every opportunity, said every thought, touched the ones we loved. Honestly, I can say this is a rarity in my life. After finishing Marina’s book tonight, I have a feeling of deep connection to her words and stories, understanding the finality of a limited life, and the inevitability of one day not having that tomorrow, next time, or later. It is scary though, to try and force yourself to actually stand up and say what you want to say, to take that step in the direction your dream is leading you, to be vulnerable to failure. Of course it is easier said then done, but what are we if we don’t, or better yet, what are we if we do? So many of us wander into the unknown of the world and fall into a place of comfort, or okayness, and I say stop. We should not wait for a moment to shake us awake, we should shake ourselves awake. There will never be a moment golden for time is a human construction and it stops for no one. There will never be a time where we wake up and find our dream in our lap, and if there is then I say dream bigger. There will never be a time when we will take a chance and look back and say wow I wish I never did that. What I know for certain is, there will never be an endless abundance of tomorrows, laters, or next times.
Marina wrote: “Do you want to leave soon?
No, I want enough time to be in love with everything…
And I cry because everything is so beautiful and so short.”
We all want this out of life, to feel the opposite of loneliness, to have enough time to love everything, to see all the beauty, but it is our certainty we will do all of this that is our greatest downfall. We must remain uncertain, we must remain unsure, and we must remain with doubts. Without these there will be no action, there will be no questions, and worst of all, there will be no moments.