Screw It; I’m Gonna Enjoy This
When one of your best friends moves to Paris, there’s nothing else to do but pack a bag, catch a flight, and get yourself as quickly as possible to the City of Light.
A few weeks ago I spent a glorious week traipsing the cobbled streets of France’s most beloved city biking, drinking, and laughing away the hours with my pal G. She’s the kind of friend that you could have fun with in an empty garage, so Paris as a playground was almost too good to be true.
She had already planned to come home (originally for about 24 hours, in between work trips) to see our friends’ new baby… but in light of the recent terrorist attacks in the city, it was nice to just see her in person, hug her neck, and try to recreate our street-traipsing here in Athens.
On one of our long walks around town, she told me something that at first struck me as strange, then overcame me with a wave of jealousy, and thirdly: nothing but the purest beauty. Since we’re both 20-something single girls, our walks often drift to Conversations About Men: the ones we are into, the ones we are super not into, the ones from our past, the potentials for our futures. But this day was different. (The following is a rough paraphrase, as G is much more eloquent and wise in her details than I can remember when putting pen to paper.)
I am so happy to be who I am, in the stage of life I am, you know? I let her press on, staring at my tennis shoes as we walked. Oh? I replied, not sure I could agree.
Yeah I mean… it’s amazing to me that I get to live this life. That God has given me this beautiful life. I picked up everything and moved to Paris… for adventure… for the experience… and I am just so thankful. It’s been hard but so good. I’m usually trapped in the pangs of “well what if I don’t get what I want? What if I never meet someone or have children or a farmhouse or any of that. What then?” But right now… I’m so incredibly thankful for the life that I have and who God has made me. THIS IS ME! This is what you get. I’m tired of feeling like a variable in someone else’s equation… just hoping to figure out how to get it right so that my life can move forward. I CAN’T BE BOTHERED WITH THAT EQUATION ANYMORE. Life is too beautiful to worry about fitting into someone else’s story at the expense of your own.
I swallowed hard, trying to sort out whether or not I agreed. Buses zoomed by, filled with undergraduates antsy for Thanksgiving break. I am so jealous, I said with a laugh. I worry too much. I wonder how to make myself fit, how to become a person that someone else will choose, how to be the right variable for their equation. I think “what if I were skinnier? Less obnoxious? Quieter? In a different city? I’m not really sure what my story is right now, to be honest. Feels like I’m standing still while everyone else zooms past me.
There was a pause as several runners passed us on the sidewalk. How do you get to the point where you can’t be bothered and just live your life? I asked.
I think you just have to say SCREW IT, I’M GONNA ENJOY THIS and take a deep breath.