Adulting: If I Had Only Known...
I’ve been excitedly exclaiming since probably my early 20s: “If only I had known!!” And the longer I live, the more I love to say it, feel the moment, and taste the words as they come out of my mouth.
Okay, so someone might think, “Um, I say that all the time…if only I had known I would run out of gasoline, if only I had known the eggs were expired etc.…” But the phrase has a slightly different meaning to me. Essentially, I like to marvel over how “past” me would have reacted to some trivia about my future. For example, if little me had only known that my best girlfriend and sister, the buddy I fought over dolls with, would be a principal of an elementary school? If younger me had only known that my first trip to England would lead to a life of travel and overseas living? Or that when I sat, crying with my friend because she wanted a baby, that in just a few short years, she would have two? If I had only known some of the languages I would study, some of the people I would have the honor of meeting, heck – even that I would one day stand and gaze in awe on King Tutankhamun’s golden funeral mask?
And on a more serious note: If I had only known that with each troubling crisis I would face, I would come out wounded, but a healthier and more peaceful person?
“If I had only known” is maybe just a silly little mental exercise, but it leads me to dive deeper into my years and wonder at the unexpected, the surprises that wait around the corner on the great path of life. And of course, a tiny part of me builds up with anticipation for what is to come. And isn’t that what I want? To look forward to the coming years?