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Updated: Feb 17

I said to someone recently that I feel like I've finally figured the world out, that everything that's happened to me finally makes sense. But now I'm wondering if I have it backwards. 

As I begin to experience aging, I am noticing how time is warping, slowing and accelerating all at once. And how the relics of my life, the places that house my memories, that anchor me, are starting to disappear. 

The "forest" that I grew up in, a thick strip of ash trees at the edge of our property, was decimated by an invasive beetle. It's just grass now, not even a twig remains. 

The place where I worked when I was 17, my refuge when high school was too much to endure, was torn down to bare earth. I cried as I drove past it on the highway, feeling that no one else could possibly be weeping for it. 

The place where I lived during sophomore year of college has also been leveled. My heart skipped a beat when I realized I could never go back. 

Up until now I've taken for granted that I could always return to these places and be instantly transported to a time when things were different. 

But aging has also granted me the wisdom in knowing you can't ever truly return. Because a place isn't just about the trees, or the words you scrawled on the bathroom stalls, or the courtyard where you caught snowflakes on your tongue, it's about the people you were with and the precious blip of time in which all the conditions were right to create those moments. 

I suppose that I'm learning that maybe life isn't about making sense of the world, but making peace with the fact that you never will. 


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