September Musings

September 12, 2023

This morning, I sat down to write with an old song stuck in my head. It was Magic by B.O.B. It used to be one of my favorites in college. As I listen to the song, now on the third replay, I can’t help but take a walk down memory lane.  All these sweet memories of college mornings when I was in an ultra-peppy mood, listening to my iPod as I walked to class, and generally feeling good about life that day. 

It was such a sweet and stressful time; when friends were so close, and it felt like anything was possible. It was just the beginning of adulthood. We’d build forts in shared living spaces and watch teenage dramas as we stared down the reality of choosing a major and career for the rest of our lives. The boys’ dorms were barely more than a bed and a laundry basket, while the girls’ dorms were beautifully decorated and smelled nice. 

We were all growing up together and playing with some of the boundaries of our bodies. Stay up all night before an exam? Sure. Go out to the bars on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night? Done and done. Walk from one end of campus to the bars without a jacket in February? Duh, the jacket would just get lost at the bars. Stay out until the bar closes, inhale junk food upon return home, and get to class on time? Sure. Hangovers lasted 4 hours and then we’d do it all over again. It was a time of life when our stomachs were steel, our bodies ran on caffeine and sugar more than sleep, and group projects were the worst. 

Meanwhile, our minds were expanding, our dreams were changing, and our parents wanted updates on the graduation date. There was stress, tears, lifelong friendships, and A LOT of microwaveable mac and cheese. In the end, we were terrified and we were relieved. The big grey abyss was intimidating, but we walked across the stage and took photos. It was the end of a life-changing chapter. 

I graduated from my undergrad 11 years ago. Since then, I got my master’s degree, had my heart broken, worked many retail jobs, got my first grown-up job, and then got a new, even better, grown-up job. I bought my first brand-new car, got married, bought a house, bought a dog, and decided I did actually want kids after many years of saying the opposite. Something about falling in love with the right person changed all that. 

Some people say college years are the best years of your life. Others say high school is the best time in your life. Some say your wedding day is the best day of your life. I don’t think any of those statements are entirely true. In my opinion, each of those statements puts way too much pressure on a specific time. I enjoyed high school, I loved college, and, while my wedding day was beautiful and filled with love, it was also really stressful and I was excited for it to be over with. I’ve always found it rather depressing to think one time, or one day, of life is better than the rest. What happens when that time passes? There’s so much life left to live!

I imagine every phase has its sweetness and its little bits of torture. I’m sure there are always reasons to wish things were over and things to be grateful for. Even in my first pregnancy, there have been moments when I regretted the decision entirely and moments when I’ve been in awe of what my body can do.

Anne Lamott calls life a practice in grace. I know from my own experience when the mind and the heart are left untended, they move towards fear and judgment. It’s really all about how you look at life and the meaning you apply to the moment. We have more power over our perspective than we like to think we do. 

One of the most beautiful lessons I’ve learned in this phase of my life is the amount of help I’m surrounded by. My brain is in a fog all the time and my memory is at its worst. Still, my community has provided the words when I can’t produce them and my support system has shown up in so many ways. I could say I only see God at work in the life my body is creating, but God is all around me right now, keeping me safe, rested, and calm.  When you look for it, you’ll find it. Be it hope, optimism, negativity, doubt, fear, confidence, creativity, beauty, or God. It’s there – you just have to choose what you look for. 

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1 Comment. Leave new

Sally Schlosser
September 13, 2023 3:45 pm

I love your perspiration on life.
I was diagnosed with late adult onset epilepsy in 2016. I think I was having minor seizures when I was at Jostens.
After I was diagnosed, I had a seizure while I was driving, grazed a tree, flipped my car and landed on the roof. I was not hurt but my car was totaled. Since then I’ve done a lot of Ubering. My social life consists of volunteering at the airport and playing bar bingo on Wednesday nights.
As a result, I consider each day the best day of my life.
You’ll be a great mom!

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