So I’ve been having a bit of a dry spell when it comes to creativity lately, but I do have two questions that sort of relate to each other from a “who are you” standpoint.
Question one: Do we ever really live to see ourselves become someone other than our fifteen year old selves?
I’ve talked about “the version of your 15 year old self” before, but I ask this because after having a conversation with a friend of mine after a few drinks – insecurities and self doubt started to play a role in where the conversation went. My friend started talking about her parents and high school and other things that bother her and get under her skin. She says that regardless of how much time has passed, when people say or do those things (friends or parents), she reverts to that 15 year old girl who has little faith in herself and many insecurities. She is now in her 30’s and has come a long way since then but still her reactions to certain things and feelings that go along with those things revert to that 15 year old. I can say that I’ve felt like this many a time in life and I tend to continuously go to that point because I think that’s just what I know and what I’m used to. But I never really thought other people looked at it that way…
They say that we are shaped not by what happens to us but how we react to things. Well if something happened to you consistently at a certain point in your life let’s say 15, won’t you react the same way at a later date? You don’t always have control over your reactions. Events and people shape your life. When you’re 15 you’re learning new things and becoming less of a child. You start to question and fight authority about things (pick a topic). You are growing and learning and there are a lot of new things going on in life, but high school and people around you are usually anything but helpful. You can find out at this point that you’re on your own. You can find that now, whenever you feel happy or excited or down and depressed that you revert to what could be considered your old ways. Well I know that all the craziness of emotional issues and angsty teenage behavior set in around 15 for me. I’ve never considered myself a rebel, but I’ve always kind of found a way to do whatever it is that I want (I don’t really mean criminally) and this still tends to be the case today.
I mean think about it – we grow and change yes, but after a certain point aren’t we all set in our ways? Aren’t the things the bothered us then still effecting us now? People in our lives, the way they do things or react, make us do or react in a certain way. Because of where we’ve been and how we’ve existed can we ever truly leave the past behind in terms of ourselves and our own processes? Does my other random thought really play a role in this too… that to know where you’re going you have to know where you’ve been… Despite learning and growing as a person and into an adult or even just past that angsty teenage phase, can we ever truly leave that person behind?
This leads me to my second question: What if life is a process of continuously losing yourself and your way?
We aren’t the same people at every age but certain things can continuously have their affect on us. Our reaction can be the same, the feelings the same. I’m sure we can all say that we’ve tried to figure out what we want in life from time to time and things have definitely changed despite maybe feeling set in our ways. Face it life never goes where you think, want or expect it to go. It just doesn’t. There are always twists and turns. And even if we end up with everything we want at some point, eventually it won’t be enough because we’ll want something else. Change is hard for people but we all have to do it at some point in our lives. And sometimes change doesn’t give you a choice whether you’re “set” or not.. you have to deal in some way. When you fail, when you realize that what you thought you wanted is no longer what you want now, ending relationships, friendships, moving, any life altering change can make you lose yourself. Love can make you lose yourself. Not knowing what you want can do the same, how can you find your way if you don’t know what you want to attempt to get? But eventually we have to “find” ourselves and our purpose or goal. What happens when we do? Do we just “become found” or “less lost” how does it work? The saying that people never change is very seemingly true but change is also inevitable. So how does that work? How do you find yourself when you’re lost? It isn’t the same process each time but how can it be?
Is it that realization that “…if I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own backyard; because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with.” Yeah another movie quote, but think about it. You feel lost so what do you do? You look within. You go through what it is that you had. You read things, you Google the most random things. You think about times you were happy and how you can get back to that. What can you change to go back to that state… time is fleeting. Time is lost the moment it’s found. We are who we make ourselves out to be, but we’re not the only ones that cause a reaction. People shape us. Events shape us. Life is only linear in terms of time going forward. However, we have the ability to regress and fall backward in millions of ways. Are we zig-zagging through life in hopes of finding something we maybe didn’t achieve the first time or do we keep getting pulled back into places that we need to learn more about or be reminded of?
I’ve been lost for a longer time than I ever initially thought. But I can’t remember where I really lost myself. I always seem to go back to that 15 year old person and use that as a starting point. Everything after that is a blur. College was fun and crazy and I learned a lot about myself and about the world from traveling through it, but I don’t initially revert to college when I try to figure out what went wrong in life or for a different way to say it where I lost my way. I was always scared to let people in after a certain point for concern of losing myself in those I care far too much about (think relationships). Truth is that happened anyway. Life after college has been a blur as well. I can’t say anything after college was what I expected it to be, nor was it what I thought I wanted. Blurred lines are everywhere. Is it because I have a crazy intuition and tend to sense what people need if I actually pay attention? Do I get lost in them because I have the ability to help? Or do you really attract those in life that are most like yourself therefore I can relate because I actually have been there?
I don’t have the answers to these questions but I’d certainly like to hear what people think. In your core values despite outside knowledge or education do you ever really lose that inner 15 year old? And is life a process of losing yourself and your way and then trying to find it again? Thoughts…