There will be an agreement in whatever variety of actions, so they be each honest and natural in their hour. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Five years ago this summer, I started an entirely new chapter of my life when I accepted a job at Oprah.com. I left my job of seven and half years, my community of comedians, musicians and actors, and my roots in Cleveland in order to move to Chicago. Excited for what the future might hold, I drove the six hours with my mom on I-90 past multiple signs for deer crossings and numerous bathroom breaks after laughing so hard at some long-forgotten random joke. That version of me was in love with the potential her life held for her, completely aware of the power of the moment. I feel as if I’m channelling her again as I get ready to take my next leap of faith.
So, what would I say to the me of the past? Stay present to the moment. Don’t worry about the pressure, you will succeed. Let go of the hope of that dumb guy who doesn’t see you for who you are. How could he? He can barely see himself. You’ll feel so much freer once you have. Being alone and loneliness are two separate things. When you label the time by yourself as negative, don’t be surprised when you have an unpleasant experience. Whatever you say it is, is what it is. Find a doctor sooner rather than later, don’t let the perpetual environment of stress and busyness stop you from taking care of your health. You will lose a lot of sleep otherwise believing your body is out of control. Take time to appreciate the people in your life, they won’t always be around. They have places to go, people to see and lives just waiting to be lived. Before you know it, it will be over, so enjoy them while you can.
To the future me, I want to say, I told you so. All those images of where you could be and who you will be that flashed through your head over the years have arrived. Are you taking the time to enjoy it? Have you made peace with yourself? Have you come out of the shadows? Do you enjoy standing in your own light? Who do you love now? Does he hold you up to meet your potential? Has he made you a better person? Does the woman reflecting back at you when you look in the mirror match the moment? Have you embraced the crow’s feet at the corners of your eyes when you smile? If so, you’ll smile more often. Continue writing, continue dreaming, continue following your big, goofy heart. Call your mom and tell her that you love her, but more then that, let her be right. It makes her feel good. Hell, let everyone you love be right more often than not. It’s a simple way to acknowledge how much they mean to you. Everyone wants to be acknowledged, even if they don’t know how to ask for it. So tell them what you see when you see it before the moment has passed you both by.