I have just recently begun to feel old. Some of you may scoff at me for beginning this feeling at the raw age of 21, but this is what I am feeling. When I say “old” however, I don’t mean a decrepit aged feeling, but a grownup independent and adult feeling. This to any child is old. There are manifold reasons for it taking hold of my shoulders and shaking me at this particular time. It yells at me and says, “Look at your life! Look at where you are going! Look at where you have been! Look at the responsibilities you need to fulfill! Look! Look! Look!” In some ways this is utterly terrifying. I don’t know exactly what I want to do with my life, but I am the point where I have to start deciding. Up to this point in my life it was always some new step of school with a marked timeline and marked goals that someone else measured. The grades, the degree audits, the “academic progress” reports… all of these were hard and fast proof that you were actually accomplishing something. As I look forward to graduating in May, I realize that I will have to set my own goals and measure my own progress and there is nothing out there that is an “end time.” I won’t ever graduate to something else. I won’t be able to rely on a movement from year to year, from grade to grade, to prove my progress. It is sort frightening.
Another reason for this is the number of my friends that are getting married. Two of my good friends got married yesterday (to each other). I have two more weddings in the next week. Four of my friends are engaged and will be married in May or June. One of my childhood friends had a baby a few months ago. I sometimes wish I was where all of them were, but I also enjoy my freedom and that God has complete influence on my travels and directions. I love the fact that I can go wherever He calls me. But needless to say, all the things that have for so long looked like “the future” they are here. Especially last night; the guy was a good friend and classmate for many years. The girl also went to high school with me but she was a grade behind me. I remember picking her up from her home at 5:00 am for Volleyball practice. The two of them liked each other in high school. But they were wise enough to hold off until about a year ago when they started courting. Every time I have talked to him since their engagement, he has been glowing and praising God for how things worked out. They have no regrets. Every time I talked with her she was glowing and thanking God for the love of such a kind and fearless guy. That is the sort of wedding that I enjoy most: two people, solidly grounded in their faith and both giving glory to the one who deserves it. The warm fuzzies attack again. But at the same time… this is “the future.” High school sweethearts are actually getting married; having children. Unfortunately, I can’t ever be married to my high school sweetheart, because I never had one. Oh well, my romance will have to be of a different kind.
I guess I kind of lost my point along in there somewhere. I am beginning to feel old. I don’t feel like a child. As a teenager you don’t want to feel like a child. But at the moment, the responsibilities and stresses that come along with being adult are things I would be tempted to give up. But at the same time, the adventure expands. The possibilities are endless. And I would never give up those sweet times of seeing the expressions on the faces of my dear friends who are reaping the marriage sown from their patience and love.