I remember waking up those summer mornings, eager to get dressed and run through my neighbor’s yard to get to the neighborhood basketball court. I remember the smell of the early morning air, and smiling because I was first one to the court at nine in the morning. I remember the sleepy, yet smiling faces of my friends thinking about the events of the day to come.
It was perfect summer: sunny days, warm nights, great friends. Freshly teenagers, we lived for bike rides, pick-up basketball games and candy from the local convenient store. Religiously we begged each night to stay out for an hour past our curfew.
Most would still consider me a child at 22, but I think about the carefree times and how in those moments I didn’t know how good my life really was. Yes, I will be the first to tell you that present life is good, great, even perfect at times, and I have yet to be seriously challenged with a difficult event and even so, I have to teach myself to starting living in the moment.
As I approach graduation from college, I have trained myself to not sweat the small stuff. Why did I let a grade that will mean nothing to me after graduation pester me or scare me about not making Dean’s List? Why did I concern myself with not finding a job before the last month of school ended? Why did I constantly compare myself to my roommates when we have nothing in common academically?
I did it because I was scared. Scared of not living the typical life, following the expected path. If there is any time that I am free, it’s now. Nothing holding me down, no one telling me what to do, no dependents expecting me to provide for them. It’s just me and my future.
Thinking about that idyllic summer, I only dwell on the good times. I don’t think about the days that my friends couldn’t make it to the basketball court, or the days the rain kept us inside, or the days that fights seemed to tear a friendship to shreds and my world seemed to stop. I think about the days where everything was perfect: the weather, my friends, the sweet taste of the candy, and the wind flying past me while on my bike.
I believe in living in the moment.
So, now I know in a decade I won’t look back at my college years and think about the bad days or the worrying that consumed me at times. I will think about the days I laughed and drank with friends and didn’t think life could get any better.
I changed my thinking, so instead of looking into my past to find the positive, I find it in the moment. I now do not need to look back to find what made or makes me happy. I am living in the moment and loving every second. I am not letting life pass me by only to find it years down the road.
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