I feel displaced.

A pair of the most formerly party-hearty friends that I frequented a decade ago, just had their first child.

In fact, most of my friends from a decade ago have had children. Plural. This isn’t new.

…I can say “a decade ago” and not have that feel abstract.

Because I remember most of what I was doing, as a fledgling adult.

I was free to make my own decisions, to live independently, to have fun with my friends. It was exciting.

Now that I’m well into the third year of my thirties, this freedom has changed in its nature. I didn’t see it happen. It was a gradual, insidious change, as subtle as the first hints of autumn. A crispness below the endless sunshine.

This freedom, once exhilarating, is now twinged with bitterness, just like the faint scratches pulling at the corner of my eyes.

I feel old.

Like I have somehow missed the boat towards a direction that everyone else implicitly understands, and I am left standing on the shore while the Arc sails away from my grasp. My future is this island where I am left only to my meandering anxieties and small  occupations;  the only distractions left to comfort me in the wake of a childhood full of naive hopes long since extinguished. And I stand helpless, as the gap between myself and the comforting certainties of Life inevitably widens, carrying away all the others I have encountered to the other side. They sail away happy; certain. Full.

I feel alone.

There is no comfort for an aimless thirtysomething like me.

No time left to “Figure It Out”, as they’d all promised I would.

Another false hope.

Another wrong path.

There is no sympathy for us lost adults.

The encompassing uncertainty that inhabits me is no longer the endearing hesitation of your twenties, it’s the off-putting disappointment of missed opportunities.

Others don’t know what to say. They do their best, waving from their boat as they can. They smile and wave, because the truth is too difficult to discuss or deny.

I am surpassed. I am lost.

I am too late.

Left marooned on the shore of my pretty little island, filled with frivolous occupations… I am too late to go somewhere greater.


10 thoughts on “Island

  1. Bran MacFeabhail says:

    Hey, I don’t have kids either. Just turned 30 this year. Have no idea what the hell I’m doing. My sis is 28, married (to a great fellow, of course), pregnant, homemaking…and I’ve never seen anyone I envied less. If we were meant to be procreating and etc, we’d have done it by now.

    1. Sorry, I changed the comment cuz I misread what you said. I get it. I wouldn’t envy her either, but I envy what I’d perceive as her feeling of wholeness.. of “Knowing What I’m Doing”, you know? And I don’t want to default on children just because it’s what we’re biologically programmed to do. I want to find some other kind of meaning for myself, because while I admire parents and those who want kids, it’s never been my deal. But finding that “thing”.. has proven difficult. Or at least not financially viable lol. For what it`s worth, I really admire your tenacity to find that thing you’re looking for. 🙂

      1. I think it’s more that I got tired of waiting for things to happen to me–I realized that I had to make my life happen. No one or thing will do it for me. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I keep putting one foot in front of the other, and trying to say “yes” to whatever pops out of the ether. I ended up in Boston, for now. I have a decent career, but now I’m starting to think of different things I could be doing. I’m keeping my eyes open, and researching other ideas. We still have so much time, and now we are adults who can do whatever we want lol

  2. It’s never too late. There is not “wrong” path — just the one you take and the others you don’t. And as long as I’m alive, chica, you’re NEVER alone. Promise. Love you. ❤

  3. Maybe get cats instead?

    I’m sitting in a car dealership waiting for them to finish maintenance… I have been here for 4 hours so far. Being 30 something is really boring sometimes.

    In other contexts though, maybe just push your mid-life crisis ahead of schedule and start doing this that are crazy different?

    1. Yeah, it is. But at least you grabbed life by the balls and did something awesome. You lived in Korea. You went to Australia. You’re a lawyer. I’m still largely the same person I was when you knew me in school haha. I guess you’re right, it’s time to take risks…. because I’ve been in a mid life crisis since I was at least 25, haha. 😀

  4. owlbeblog says:

    I am one who married and has kids…and still find myself on the wrong path. Is it too late for me too? I can’t be. Please tell me it’s not.

    1. I can’t say… but I definitely know that whatever the situation, we humans can always find the capacity to feel out of place… or in place. I guess sometimes it boils down to choice.

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