Several attempts at updating, and a thousand rolls and a half of the anxiety ball later, I am a year older. The bane of any writer’s existence is real life, and I don’t think anyone will bother to deny this. The moments when we aren’t writing, we want to be reading. Alas, one must eat, drink, sleep, and everything else in between. Existence is immensely tedious.
I remember writing posts last year about waiting games and crossroads. Whether or not they were actually published on this blog, or left in draft limbo, I am too lazy to figure out. But at this moment in time, I am still playing the accursed waiting game at yet another crossroads. It’s comparable to when you REALLY need to pee (or worse, poo), and there are no appropriate stops in the trip, so you have to choose between holding it at risk of wetting yourself (or worse), or jumping off whatever is the convenient mode of transportation in this analogy. It’s utter torture, and happens to most, if not all, of us. Those that might say they do not experience this, you are privileged af, and there is no room for you here. I have too much hard-to-let-go resentment for you, and I’m much too stubborn to try and convince myself of your innocence right now.
But today, I am 22, and I do not feel it. I’m not even gonna insult those younger than me, thinking I’m, like, so old, or older than me, believing I’m “just too inexperienced,” but not saying it out loud, and say that I’m either of them. Much like how I feel about other people, age hardly defines the entirety of me. I don’t feel 22 because I think too much, unlike, but, also like people my age. I don’t feel 22 because of the things I have and don’t have, unlike, but, also like people my age. I don’t feel 22 because I want and don’t want certain things, unlike, but, also like people my age.
For a long time, I assumed that there was a point in time, like an actual graduation, where a person starts knowing All Things. As a child, one believes that all adults know right from wrong, good from bad, and black from white. As an adult, one realizes that children probably know more than adults do. It is the most disorienting thing of which I think not a lot of people talk about enough. People don’t normally go about declaring that they don’t understand something, because coupled with human beings’ fear of the unknown is the fear of looking like we know nothing.
A friend recently accomplished, let’s say, a milestone, in her adulthood. I saw myself in her, in that I remember feeling like I was also lost, sinking into not-so-figurative quicksand, and breathless from the effort that I was making to catch up with everyone else around me. I told her so after she shared her fears, and I can only hope I reassured her, at least enough so that she can pick herself up. I know only too well how far assurances go, but I know that they are also significant in rebooting one’s system. It is only a matter of time.
It was then I realized that, while most of the time, we think that we know nothing (because the rest of the time, we really don’t), there are things that we learn along the way that are somehow discounted. These are the little things that we usually forget were actually the most terrifying things to us before.
I remember, when I was younger, I was at a play-place with my family. I was probably not more than eight years old. I wanted something to drink, a milk choco or something. My mom then gave me a 20 peso bill. I remember having no clue on what to do. I realized that I hadn’t ever bought anything with a paper bill before, and I didn’t know how to pay for something, let alone receive change. I tried my best, went up to the girl selling snacks, responsibly asked how much the box of milk was, and she politely answered me. I think it cost between 15-18 pesos. But silly little me had no idea what she said, what it meant, or what I should do next. So I said, “Excuse me,” and went back to my parents, telling them that I didn’t know what to do. So my dad went back with me, and I got my milk choco.
Imagine that, I was such a helpless little girl that I couldn’t even figure out how to buy a box of milk. Now, I’m still a helpless little girl, but in different ways. It is funny to think that once incomprehensible things can be so simple in a blink of an eye. And yet, it never feels like a blink in the moment. It always feels like you’re staring down a cliff face, and there is nothing but a black pit to catch you if you fall.
It is comforting that, somehow, this is so ingrained in my mind that, no matter how scared or anxious or restless or helpless I feel, there are things that I can do with just muscle memory. And that soon, other things will be ingrained, too. In the meantime, I have that staring contest with the black pit. Waiting games to play. Crossroads to… stand in the middle of, I guess.
Happy Friday to you. Happy Birthday to me.
PS: Sorry for the lack of featured image. There’s only so many hours in a day, and so much energy I can expend, and I had too many errands to do today. I almost forgot to publish this, too. Trust me when I say I wish I’d created more as well.
I [try to] update
every Monday-Wednesday-Friday-Sunday night! I’m always present on social media, @thecynicalnerd on Instagram and Tumblr, @nerdTHEcynical on Twitter and Snapchat 🙂