Looking Back.

Recently, I’ve noticed people reminiscing on social media about where they were – physically, emotionally, mentally, what have you – 10 years ago.

It’s been interesting seeing people’s photos of their younger selves alongside their current selves, or sharing what was happening with them in 2009.

It’s funny, because 2009 seems like a lifetime ago to me. So I decided to peek back through my own social media to remind myself of what my life was like.

Man. What a different time.

Thirty-two-year-old me, frustrated with work (amid job cuts), travelling overseas,  flitting around to various parties – costume parties, dance nights, a wedding – trying to navigate online dating, pining over young men, deciding to hang up my backpack to save for real estate, considering joining Twitter, agonizing over what getting a Blackberry for work would mean for my personal time, and wondering what the future would hold.

But still optimistic. Still having authentic interactions with strangers.

And my dad was still around.

Who I am now: Older, heavier, wearier, starting to grey. I’m less prolific with my writing in this space and not mooning over men. Grousing about work much less, but still grousing. But at least I’ve resumed trying to satiate my wanderlust when I’m able.

Has my optimism been extinguished? I don’t know. I suppose there are times I still look for the silver lining. But I think my youthful hope has been replaced by wariness.

I feel like I’ve shrunken inwardly. Maybe it’s due to sadness. Disappointment. A constant awareness (and dread) of my own mortality. Despite my ability to still be social and outgoing, despite all the good moments I’ve had in the past 10 years, I feel quiet and small.

***********

At this time 10 years ago, I was probably preparing to ring in the new year with friends.

Today? I’ll probably just head over to my mom’s condo for a few hours, then head home to ring in the New Year, quietly, on my couch.

I’m sure my 32-year-old self would be a bit bewildered.

But I’d probably tell her to pipe down, adding that when she’d understand when she got to my age.

I don’t think it’s a bad thing. In a world and at a time that feels like it’s rarely quiet, some peace and solitude is sometimes necessary.

So, my wish for you is for some peace and solitude for the first few moments of 2020, so that you can gather your strength to take on the moments that follow.

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