I drove down a road tonight that once upon a time I drove down nearly every single night. As I drove, music bled from the speakers and suddenly I was sixteen again. I could see myself, almost as if I had floated out of my own body, on any given day back then. My hair long, blowing in my open windows. That haunted look in my eyes. That question playing on repeat in my head, “Is this forever? When will this end?” Because I knew it would.
And as I drove down that road tonight, I was once again reminded of how funny life is sometimes. How sometimes when God is ripping something from your grasps and seemingly breaking your heart, He’s actually opening up opportunity for your life to begin.
Tonight, I’m in a room I spent most of my life in. It’s been stripped of my touch and it looks nothing the same. Even the scent isn’t the same. Less perfume, more paint. I remember thinking and hoping and dreaming of the days that I’d return to this room long after I’d survived high school. I used to will myself to these kind of moments to find out the answers to my nagging questions. Who would I end up with? Would I get married? What would be important in my life (and more importantly, would what was keeping me up at night then be important in the years to come)? Would I ever be taken seriously? Would I ever be seen as more than just the baby? Will I make it?
Well, future me has suddenly become the present. And those nagging questions don’t nag me so much anymore. Life happened.
Who would I end up with? Well, everyone I hoped I would. My friends are the ones I’d hoped would stick around. And my husband…he’s exactly who I wanted him to be.
Would I get married? Yes, yes I would.
What would be important? That’s still complicated. But most importantly is to be happy and healthy. Less drama, more life. And no, all those things that kept me awake at night no longer matter. In fact, I can’t even remember what they were.
Would I ever be taken seriously? Depends on who you’re asking. But I’d like to believe that at some point or another in my life thus far, I’ve been taken seriously.
Would I ever be seen as more than just the baby? The answer to that question is a no. And I’m making my peace with that one day at a time.
Will I make it? Well, I survived high school, college and some change. Sometimes scraping by by the skin of my teeth. Sometimes drowning and swimming as hard as I could to just get my head above water. But yes, you make it.