Nostalgia

A year from now we’ll all be gone
All our friends will move away
And they’re goin’ to better places
But our friends will be gone away

Nothin’ is as it has been
And I miss your face like hell
And I guess it’s just as well
But I miss your face like hell

. . . 

Been talkin’ ’bout the way things change
And my family lives in a different state
If you don’t know what to make of this
Then we will not relate
So if you don’t know what to make of this
Then we will not relate

. . . 

Rivers and roads
Rivers and roads
Rivers ’til I reach you
[Repeat]

-“Rivers and Roads” by The Head and The Heart

Nostalgia is a funny thing. It can sneak up on you at the oddest times, and it’s hard to predict what your reaction will be when it does. Mine snuck up on me recently when I had my 29th birthday. I’m generally not one to get homesick, but despite it being a fairly routine day (aside from it being my birthday, of course), I suddenly felt isolated and alone. My family and the friends I had grown up with were 2,000 miles away. My hubby had to work late. I was turning 29–the last year of my twenties. It was the beginning of the end of some of the best years of my life so far. It meant I’ve grown up; life will only get more complicated from here. It was a little scary. Did I mention I was feeling alone? When I almost burst into tears as my coworkers sang “Happy Birthday” to me, I figured this was going to be my “thing” for the day. I had made plans to meet up with one of my closest friends that night, and admittedly, I seriously considered canceling. Not for any good reason. Just so I could go home and embrace the alone-ness (read, curl up somewhere and cry). Thankfully I didn’t.

The first time I heard the song above was on the Chuck series finale (and then again later on How I Met Your Mother). It was engrossing, but the message didn’t really hit me. At least, not until my birthday. For good or bad, we will never get some things back. It’s impossible to recreate a time in your life. It’s impossible to spend a day with someone who’s already passed away. Time will always move forward and it can’t be stopped. Which is why we have to make the best decisions we can now, and sometimes that may mean sacrificing something good for something great. Sometimes the sacrifice may not seem glamorous or exciting, but it is a sacrifice nonetheless. As I was telling my best friend, even when we make the right choices, those choices still have consequences. Even if we’re “going to better places,” we’re still going away. I am truly grateful for everything that has gotten me this far. But this is the time when, to a certain extent, I have to “graduate from” what I had so that I can fully embrace what I have now and will have in the future.

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