Monday, June 11, 2012

"the best years of our lives are not behind us"

A few weeks ago, an article from the Yale Daily News made the rounds on Facebook.  A young, talented writer had some encouraging words about her experience at Yale that I think apply to us all, no matter how young or old we are, no matter whether we went to Yale or didn't.  She says:
But let us get one thing straight: the best years of our lives are not behind us. They’re part of us and they are set for repetition as we grow up and move to New York and away from New York and wish we did or didn’t live in New York. I plan on having parties when I’m 30. I plan on having fun when I’m old. Any notion of THE BEST years comes from clichéd “should haves...” “if I’d...” “wish I’d...”
Of course, there are things we wished we did: our readings, that boy across the hall. We’re our own hardest critics and it’s easy to let ourselves down. Sleeping too late. Procrastinating. Cutting corners. More than once I’ve looked back on my High School self and thought: how did I do that? How did I work so hard? Our private insecurities follow us and will always follow us.
But the thing is, we’re all like that. Nobody wakes up when they want to. Nobody did all of their reading (except maybe the crazy people who win the prizes…) We have these impossibly high standards and we’ll probably never live up to our perfect fantasies of our future selves. But I feel like that’s okay.
Marina Keegan, 22, was set to graduate from college with more wisdom than some of us attain by 122.  Unfortunately, she never made it there, as she died in a car crash just days before commencement.   Her writing (which you can read the rest of here) is so full of hope, of encouragement, and stands as a reminder to the rest of us that it's never to late to do something about your dream.  To find those people who make up your web and be grateful for them every day.  And to spend more time with the boy across the hall and less time procrastinating.

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