I have lived an incredible life.
So much so, that I find myself thinking about the past and feeling incredibly sad.
That doesn't make sense, does it. Well, I've thought about it. And it drives me insane.
Because I want to be able to reflect. To look back with a smile with a full heart.
Because truly, my memories should be viewed that way. I have accomplished so much. Graduating from a competitive university, bursting out of my comfort zone to travel to China and Japan, complete an internship far from home. Even when I had no idea what I was doing, I pushed forward. I never gave up. And then, take that a thousand steps further and move to three large cities thousands of miles from home over the span of five years. Just about when I feel settled and happy, I uproot again, changing courses completely. Leaving a successful career to chase an insane dream. Found a ground-breaking kind of love, and then discovered an even greater one in myself.
But when I see old photos, or think of my experiences, I feel a shadow hovering over me. So I started to think about this, because honestly, I hate it. I wanted to break it down.
Memories are chemical reactions in the brain, transmitted electrically. They are not fixed. They are variable as our brain recollects them. They are very apt to change.
So, yes, the original memories (events, as we should say), were rosy. Challenging, scary, unnerving, yes. But rosy.
But once my brain replayed them for me, as seen in a new light of heartbreak or painful reminiscing of what was instead of what is, the memories fade to a monochromatic scene. And the brain rehearses. It has to be ready for recollection in the blink of an eye. While it rehearses, the memories evolve. They take on whatever essence is most prevalent in our brains at the time.
While so much of my life has been an astounding adventure, I often find myself missing what was. Which gives my memories an old glow that makes me kind of sad. As I recollect them in this sad light, they turn sad. Make sense?
What's the point of all this.
The point, is that I need to start rehearsing my memories in a positive light. Bring back that beautiful, irresistible, rosy color.
Instead of holding on SO tightly to the past, I need to embrace the future. Which, of course, is terrifying. Which is why it isn't so easy to do.
But embracing the future, and even better, the present, leads to an ability to look back without feeling some type of way. I think. Just like medicine, life is a practice.
My new goal?
Be thankful. Be proud of myself.
And embrace the in-between.