Wednesday, December 3, 2014

It's a brand new year.


Yesterday, on my drive home from school,
I picked a cd at random to listen to
(since I have a real fear of overplaying
"The Lizzie McGuire Movie" soundtrack
and coming to hate it).

It was the soundtrack
to a New Year's Eve program
that we watched at church in 2009,
featuring teenagers talking about their lives
and how they were trying to be good
and how they were trying to be Christian.

And there were songs
with lyrics like,

It's a brand new year
and my heart has been opened.
It's a brand new chance
to show where I'm standing.
And I don't want to miss this chance
for a brand new life!

Admittedly,
it's incredibly cheesy.
But when I was 17,
it captured my mind and heart.

I was going (hopefully) to BYU
in a few months.
I was going on a great adventure.
I wanted to be
more than what I was.
I wanted to become
this person
with goals and dreams
who lived up to them--
who made of her life
something rich
and meaningful
and useful
and beautiful.

A picture of me at that time.

Last night,
as I was listening to those songs,
they sent that burning right into my heart.

And it made me cry.

Because of how nice it felt
to feel the light of those dreams
like I was seventeen again.

Because of
how good my life has been,
and how much joy
life has given me
that I never imagined.

Because of all the times
that I didn't make my life
beautiful
and useful
and meaningful
when I could have.

And mostly,
mostly for the me
that felt those idealistic dreams
who is now long dead.

It's sad to have lost her
to someone
who sees that life is unfair,
that people are inconsistent,
that problems never get solved,
who feels grated by people who think
that faith is easy
and questions always have answers.

But it's okay to have lost her
to someone
whose heart is moved
to love others,
who looks for beauty
in the cracks between ugliness,
who wants to let other people
make choices,
and wants to have faith
that burns longest,
not brightest.

Even though that girl dead,
it's still natural somehow
to feel her in my heart,
because she is me.

But it is bittersweet,
as,
it turns out,
all of life is.

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