[6] 29 Lessons

Life is life.

Somewhere along the line, some youthful version of myself decided that if I was living life the right way, it would all always fit right and it would all always be exciting. I've got this penchant for adventure and big changes, a sort of restlessness about me; and when you're young, it's easy to buy into that--to feed it, like that's the way things are supposed to be.

But I've got news for you. Actually, I've got news for myself, because it's been quite hysterical to sit down to write these lessons each week and realize that I'm still really learning all this stuff. But the news is: Life is life. In the grand scheme of things, life is an adventure. If you are living life freely, there is a certain surrender unto change and grandiose gestures. But no matter how much of that exists in your life, you still have days in between. Not just, like, a day. Dayssss(sssss). And this is where we get the term day-to-day, which I think we've been conditioned to consider blahhhhh.

You may try to avoid it! You may succeed for awhile! But if you want to Instagram your fabulous life, you're going to have to pay for that phone. Eventually, you'll come to the conclusion that you would like to determine the colors of your walls, and you will get a mortgage. You'll find that employers aren't so keen on European tours as "life experience" and "resume building." We will curse the long-termness of all these inhibitors, claiming the creators of such rules are narrow-minded and bored with life and the evil, evil man. (Because for awhile, longer for some than others, we all get some foolishness in us.)

It's not just the paying of bills and the growing of roots and the institution of structure either. Sometimes it's just sheer monotony. One day, you'll wake up and you'll do all the exact same things you did the day before and in a moment of panic you'll question, "When did life become so dull and dry?" At this point, it will be time for another life crisis, and this is a horrible and exhausting pattern you'll continue until you realize: life is life.

I read somewhere once that it's in our darkest moments, we start to compare ourselves to others. But all we know of others' lives is what they share. Instagram and Facebook and even conversations are the highlight reels of someone's life, but these are their moments we consider when we're living our behind-the-scenes (is sort of more how what I read went). 

There's a certain kind of beauty in that day-to-day boredom though, you start to learn. It's comforting. It's spacious for thinking. It's slow, since we all need less busy and more routine than we're willing to admit. Though your twenty-something self will tell you that you've turned into your grandparents and you've lost your zest for life, I say this: In reaching this stage, you have accomplished something. You have accomplished actual living. All those big leaps and meanderings before? Those were not real. They were experiments. They were tastes. They were memory-builders. And they all got you to this point, where you've matured and experienced enough to build a life around yourself, one that is so cozy it can even lend itself to boredom once in awhile.

I don't think we ever stop dreaming and yearning, and I don't think we should ever stop trying and living. There are many more adventures to have in my lifetime. My lifetime, my life, which is comprised of big markers and the little days in between upon which those big moments stand--the life part of life.