This is something I feel like comes up semi-a lot. I think I’ve written some version of this post a few times, and it’s something my mind comes back to a lot to. Because for me, it’s been one of the hardest things to really internalize and be okay with…
I feel behind a lot. (And by a lot I mean both often and in very large ways.)
All the time, I am seeing people who actually focused and worked these past two years (as opposed to me who sad around and cried), and where they are now.
I see the commercials friends booked, the programs they made it through, shows they did, grants they got, classes they aced. I see many of the improvements in lives that could’ve potentially happened in mine too. (Maybe. I mean, who knows, really.)
And I feel behind.
And I don’t just feel behind in comparison to other people. I feel behind in comparison to where I thought I’d be or wanted to be or to what all the momentum in my life made it seem like things truly could be.
And I keep thinking I’ll feel less behind, “once I lose 10 pounds and feel more like the old me,” “once I finish the re-write on my pilot so I don’t feel such a giant gaping hole in having writing good recent writing samples,” “once I mend fences with such and such friend, so it feels like my personal life is a little better,” “once I get to the point of BMI that I’m doing all new assignments and not just new takes on old ones,” “once I ….” There are more. It feels like there are millions. It always feels like, “if I can just do this or that, I’ll be back. I’ll ‘catch up.'”
But. The thing is, I can’t really totally 100% ever catch up. I can’t undo every little piece of damage done in my life (by metaphorical shrapnel coming off what happened to me). I can’t fix every relationship that had a tear. Some will be unfixable. I can’t start all the friendships I “should’ve had,” had he not been in my life. I can’t write two years worth of material in a month to make me feel better that I was so non-functional for a while. I can’t make BMI go any faster than it’s going. I can’t re-live every experience that I had over the past two years, trying to be more present this time.
I can re-create some. I can be present going forward. I can work on strengthening relationships I do still have. I can try to write a lot more now and on and on. There are things I can do going forward, but picking up every piece that was lost is impossible.
And that’s a really hard thing to deal with. And I don’t know how to get rid of the feeling of being perpetually behind.
Not everything is linear. And not everything takes specifically a certain amount of time. There are some things in life where one little moment – one job interview, one little something makes a giant shift in your world.
So, maybe if I just keep trying to move forward as best as humanly possible, there will come a day where something giant happens and it will feel like my life is in a good place no matter what weird wind-y way I took to get there.
But that day is not today. And being behind sucks. And having lost parts of my life sucks. And I can probably generally get most of those parts back – they just might not be in the exact way they were or the way I originally imagined. I dunno. I guess I don’t have some amazing concluding statement. I just – the game of catch up is sometimes exciting (e.g. “look at all I’m getting done!). It can feel like forward movement. And then sometimes it just hits me that it literally can’t all be done. I can do a lot for my future. But I can’t time travel to my past.