Over the past year, I’ve been reviewing the world through gold-rimmed glasses. You know, the kind that rest on the back of your head and coat the world you’ve left behind in gilded shades of light to the point that all your youth might appear a continuous Christmas, filled with joy, beauty and adventure. Over the past year and a half, I’ve been coping with this new phase of my life and the responsibilities that accompany ‘adulthood,’ or whatever life at 34 is called. The transition has not proven especially kind to me: anxiety, panic attacks, self-doubt, ephemeral goals, and an influx of nieces and nephews, who remind constantly that I am no longer a thirteen-year-old playing at ‘adulthood’ by babysitting his siblings, but simply an thirty-four year old trying to reconnect with his youthfulness.
Mostly, I’ve found myself idealizing the past: gazing at my college years and post-college interim at NIH with a fondness, which I never felt in the midst of it all. I spent so many years begging, searching, fretting over finding myself a job, and now that I’ve found it, the sensation leaves much to be desired. Thus, my mind idealizes those past moments, when the freedom to choose still lay before me, when life felt infinite and unexpected.