Plus ça change…
I have recently come to the conclusion, or I am being painfully reminded of a certain universal constant. That is, the only constant in life is change. If things aren’t changing something is wrong. Really wrong. Don’t believe it? Try this, think about you job. What happens if you stop learning? Stop trying to do new things? Stop stretching yourself beyond your boundaries? Stop changing? You stagnate. You get stuck. Passed over for promotions. Yes, I’m being a bit extreme, but there’s a grain of truth in there.
Ok here’s another. There’s a joke I read somewhere “Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.” Funny. Ha ha. But we wouldn’t be nostalgic for how things were if they hadn’t changed.
Take the weather, which is always changing (catastrophic events aside, like tornadoes) What would we do with ourselves if we couldn’t complain about the weather? Think of all the opportunities for small talk that would be missed or bore us to death.
That’s life! And we wouldn’t have life without change.
So my life is changing, as it has for the past two years, give or take. What gets me is that why the changes seem so huge. Big, life-altering, change-your-retirement-plans, the future-is-not-as-you-thought-it-would-be changes. Things that make you look back and reevaluate… everything. How did I get here? What motivated me to do this or that? Did I really cause that to happen? How do I make up for it? How do I fix it? Can it be fixed? All the while trying not to beat yourself up over it because at the time you thought you were making good decisions, analyzing all possibilities and doing what was right for yourself, but in the end, you were, for many years, an ignorant 15-year-old who thought he knew everything.
And looking back, you want to smack yourself in the forehead. *smack*smack* Twice. Three times. Yes, some of the catalysts of change are myself, but sometimes it seems like others just come from nowhere. And coping with all of this at once can be a daunting task at a minimum.
You look around and you see people, friends, coworkers who have good lives and don’t have these problems and you say to yourself “Gee, they have it easy and I have it hard. Life sucks.” But every now and again you meet someone who seems to have it together on the outside, but on the inside things are all screwy and you have to step back and reassess and remember that comparing yourself to others is a dumb thing to do. Maybe most people just handle the things life throws at them better than others. Can I do that, too?
Life is change. Anything who says different is… lying?
But still, does it always have to be so hard? Where’s the change for the positive? Sooner or later, the dealer has to deal me an ace, right? Right? Bueller?