Have you ever had a moment of clarity that lasted but a second? In the moment, something internal shifts just so, so that everything in your life seems to fit together in absolute immaculate perfection for just that one moment in time.
I actually don’t think us humans can stand that moment of complete togetherness for too long, however. It can only be a fleeting moment of perfection and by the time you realize it, it’s gone. Perhaps the clarity happens every so often, maybe only a couple times in your entire life and due to it’s ecstatic inducing characteristics, you are left out of breath.
Or perhaps it was just my breath getting caught in my lungs as I pushed myself to run run run faster faster at the gym. Because today I had a moment of clarity during my 2.5 mile run, and I was utterly in awe of my life and the person I have become. I don’t think I have felt so put together, perfect and whole in my entire life. At the same time, I was disgustingly dripping in sweat and red faced and struggling with allergies, so perhaps not utter perfection, but I felt pretty darn whole. So allow me to reflect:
I am proud of myself. I am proud of going from the clueless, irresponsible and emotion-charged girl from my college days to the slightly less clueless, mostly responsible, and emotion-driven woman I feel that I am today. I have pushed myself to be in the best shape of my life during the one year I have left the nest and have had a job that I thought would ruin me. I am proud of myself because I am not only have I been successfully 100% responsible for myself, but also for the learning of 100 students.
I get myself up at 5:30 every morning, without hitting snooze. I work my ass off for the next 11 hours before I feed myself with wholesome food that I make with my own culinary learnings and I get myself to the gym where I work my ass off some more. I come home, and I am opening up to my love and my religion and my understanding of the type of person I want to be. I am growing into myself.
On the weekends, I am going out for casual drinks with friends, not going blackout on Broadway. I am being active and going on walks with Eric’s hand in mine. We talk about being together and we talk about the future and I dream of mine with his. We watch movies and go to bed at 9pm on a Saturday and wake up tot he morning snuggles that rejuvenate me for the week ahead.
I pay my bills. I call my parents and keep up with my college friends. I’ve made some pretty awesome and inspiring friends in Nashville. I clean my room and do my own groceries. I am self sufficient. This is such a departure from the life I led in college.
I guess I I always knew I was good at being reckless. I can push myself off a bridge or climb to the top of table mountain. I will jump off a cliff, I will walk 12 miles down a gorge. I will forget deadlines and scramble—caffeine driven—to turn things in at last minute. I am much better at asking forgiveness than I am asking for permission. I will ride an elephant and I will learn a Farsi on a whim. I will text people I shouldn’t and I will do all the other things that 20-something are supposed to do to “feel alive.” I think there’s a certain stigma attached to my age group that you’re supposed to be a mess at this point in your life. But… do we always have to be such a mess?
Because I am 23 and in addition to being recklessly alive, I am also inexplicably put-together. And I adore myself for it. I am proud of myself for holding together a young person (myself) that could have been broken this year. I am proud of myself to creating life habits that will be written into my being from now on. And if this being together-ness makes me the most boring 23-year-old, then so be it. Because at just 23, I feel ready to take on the world, no matter what comes at me. I have proven myself that much. I am strong. I am beautiful. I am able. I am worthy.
Cue the moment of clarity at the gym. As my body moved in perfect syntonization of legs to arms to chest to lungs and heart, I realized these things about myself in just a split second. And then that moment was gone. But that moment happened. And I realized. I realized that the pieces of the puzzle that make up myself are not as scattered as they used to be. The big picture of who I am really is coming together.
And I have a sneaky suspicion that that big picture is a beautiful one to behold.