Monday, August 30, 2010

false conceptions of time

SCENE: melissa, seven years old, playing carolyn a song she wrote on the guitar.

melissa: "you play the guitar, carolyn--you should be famous. but your life is over. too bad."
carolyn: "wait, what? my life is over?"
melissa: "yeah, you're old. all you have left is to get married, and then you die a few years after that."

camille: "no, melissa, she has a long life ahead of her! think of how long mom and dad have been married!"
melissa: "yeah, they're going to die as soon as carolyn gets married."

[uncomfortable pause]

melissa: "sooo....what should i write my song about?"
carolyn: "why don't you write it about how my life is over?"
melissa: "your life isn't over! you might not even get married! you might be a nun!"

and that thought is supposed to comfort me? either i get married and die, or else i live a long, nunly life? awesome melissa, thanks.

but you know, when she said, "your life is over" the first time, it cut me to the quick--oh my oh my. you know that song by baz luhrman, the sunscreen song, about how "in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you"? not to mention images of uncle rico throwing his football into the sunset? yes, these thoughts all came rushing forth with frightening ferocity.

so here's what i think: there are two ways to look at life:

TAKE ONE: the "i coulda been a contender" approach. man, i have missed so many opportunities. i could have really gone far with ballet/piano/ballroom/spanish/art, but none of them really took off. if only i had really applied myself!

TAKE TWO: i have an ENTIRE LIFE plus ETERNITY to learn everything i want to! enter photojournalism class and ballet class, enter deciding i can be famous at 24. man, i'm just a youngin'! and i'm well on my way to learning everything there is to know about everything AND becoming famous and married in the process, which are apparently the two most important things to life-happiness, according to a seven year old girl. what an adventure!

1 comment:

  1. Haaaaahahaha this is fantastic. I love you Carolyn. I for one believe you have great potential in your remaining years (which hopefully are many)