Monday, August 1, 2016

On the Merry-Go-Round of the Past


Normally, I don't truly understand why other people seem to think I'm so young for my age. I almost always just blame it on my youthful looks and the fact that I don't really choose clothing, hairstyles, or make-up that would be considered age appropriate. Then something will happen that shows me it's probably more than that. I'm realizing that I still act young and think young for someone that's 40 years old. I'm also realizing that it's not necessarily a bad thing.

For instance, I don't get nostalgic over dead technology the way a lot of people my age do. I don't think tapes and CDs are superior to digital music and streaming. I don't wistfully sigh and think back fondly on the days when people shared a landline and some dial-up Internet with the rest of their family instead of having their own cell phones and devices. Why would I? Today's technology is so much better, more accessible, and more convenient than the shit I grew up with.

Sure, at the time all of that seemed pretty cool, but it was the best, most innovative technology that was available at the time as well. Sure, I still like listening to a lot of the same bands I liked growing up, but I love that I can listen to perfect, pristine-quality versions of their albums on Spotify now instead of having to pop a plastic disc into some clunky old player. Honestly, if I were still single and dating someone my age? I would probably reconsider them if they were still making mix tapes and burning CDs. It's just a silly thing to do in a day and age when there are better, more efficient alternatives.

The older I get and the older my so-called peers get, the more differences there seem to be between us. Honestly, I can't even talk to most of my old high school acquaintances anymore without being bored out of my gourd. All they want to do is "remember when" and wax nostalgic about times in our lives that are long over with. They don't ever seem to listen to new music or give new television shows a try either. They're living completely in the past and I can't imagine wanting to do that myself. I don't want to do that myself. The 90's are over with. I want to enjoy the era I'm living in right now.

........

Speaking of the past, I actually wound up giving that interview I mentioned in my last post. The one about abuse survival. It was quite an experience -- both freeing and very draining at the same time. Some of the questions I was asked challenged me to look at certain things from angles I'd never quite considered before. It was kind of a lot of work emotionally. So much work, in fact, that I don't even think I did much work writing that day. I just wound up in a different head space that I didn't expect to find myself in.

Perhaps that's part of the issue I have with people that glamorize anything about the past. Although I will admit to missing the simplicity of life back then and the wonderful optimism that seems to come with being young, that's about it. I never want to be back where I was emotionally, mentally, and socially speaking. I never want to know and understand as little about myself as I did then. I never again want to be surrounded by people that don't really accept me and refuse to understand me. 

That is what the past is to me, at the end of the day -- a merry-go-round that wouldn't stop spinning long enough for me to figure out where I was and get my bearings. It would spin so viciously as to make me feel scared, nauseous, and confused at all times. I do not miss that feeling. I like it here in the present -- the place where life, technology, and society is a much better fit for who I know myself to be.