Musings on the present

“The future sucks. Change it.” Beavis from Beavis and Butthead
“The future of the future will still contain the past. Time moves slow and time moves fast.” Everything but the Girl

Briana’s think-piece on nostalgia and anxiety over our pasts and futures has made me reflect on those themes.(http://justbriana.blogspot.com) Today I told a fledgling gang member to picture himself at 20, 30, and 40. I wonder if he even sees himself alive past 18. I think of Henry behind bars, of my cousin on meds, and of David below the ground. The past, now that I’m 33, is always present. As is the future.

33 is not very old. In terms of my career field, 33 is a baby bird. I feel like one sometimes, all plucky feathers like Emily Dickinson’s windswept friend, a chubby little warrior struggling to yank worms through soil and to raise new wings to flight. Others feed me pieces of advice and I am safe in a nest of warmth. As usual, I am blessed beyond belief. The universe protects me.

Every day, I say the Prayer of Jabez. I am better about that than my inconsistent relationship with the Liturgy of the Hours. This prayer helps me to reflect on what I have, what I need to learn, what I have experienced. It connects past, future, and present.

When I was young, I longed for the future. When I feel old, I long for the past. More often than not, I embrace the present, jump off that teetering branch, and understand that my wings can only grow stronger. I can only grow more brave.

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