Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Every Phase Better than the Last

There has been a tag going around my high school friends about what they were like during those school years. It's been fun reading all of my fellow Wasps' perceptions - especially because those who have participated so far were not the people I spent most of my time with. I've been tempted to play along, but I'm just not much of a 'taggette'...I find that I'm much too long-winded to answer simple questions, and I sit much too long in front of the screen thinking much too hard about each answer.


every once in a while I compare my high school self to my present self - and the array of emotions that inescapably follow this type of comparison is overwhelming. In some ways, I am pleased. In some ways, I am saddened. In some ways, I feel lucky. In some ways, I feel chastened. In some ways, I feel embarrassed. In some ways, I feel like rejoicing.

I loved high school. I loved almost every part of it. At the time of graduation, I cried because I thought my life was ending. Where else was I going to find such great friends? such wonderful teachers? such security? Yes, I felt secure in high school - especially my senior year. I had friends whom I loved deeply - and who I felt loved me in return. Was I popular? No - not in the Homecoming Queen, Student Body President type of popular...but I was popular among the people who surrounded me - and I felt that they were all popular, too. We generally didn't care what other people were thinking about us, and that left us free to laugh and play and really enjoy ourselves. Let's not pretend there weren't hard times...practically my whole sophomore year was spent in tears over stupid boys (remember, Sarah?)! But, since we're speaking in general terms here, I was happy.

That happiness carried itself into college - and, in fact, whenever I start to think about my 'past' self, I think of this birthday card that Brian gave to to me while we were dating. Inside, he wrote, "I saw this card and thought immediately of you, with all the smiles & whatnot" and later "I hope you have a great day! (I know you'll say you did, even if you didn't!)" Why do I bring this up? Because, every once in a while, I worry that I've lost some of that carefree happiness.

Enter: my honest hubby! Last night I mentioned this concern to Brian by saying, "I just feel like I'm not really the same person you married."
He looked at me with a shocked expression and immediately replied,
"You're not! And I wouldn't want you to be!"
He helped me see that our life experiences have given us depth and an understanding of life. The memories of our sweet son have encouraged me to become more spiritual, and more focused on trying to better myself so I will be with him again. We have grown-up responsibilities that require physical and emotional demands. Brian helped me see that it's okay to not be joking around and laughing all the time, because we've tried to fill the gaps with depth. I may have lost some of my carefree happiness...but the happiness I feel now is so much deeper and so much more real!

I loved high school. I loved almost every part of it. But I just couldn't do it all over again - because now I'd know what I was missing. :)


  1. Wow, Linds. I love how you look at life. I like how you see things. I think I need you to shed a little perspective on my life more often...

  2. That was such a great post...and for what it's worth, to me, you ARE one of the most happy and carefree people I know! What must you have been like in high school?:)

  3. I really enjoyed reading your post. I agree with Katie, you are always so upbeat and cheerful. I could seriously get you the same kind of card. You know,not everyone can make the people around them happy by just knowing them, and you do. I'm glad that you see more to your life, and that you've grown. We all do. But you have such a great influence on those around you, sounds like that carried over too!

  4. Thank you for your post. I have run into an old friend from school (we are now in the same ward, talk about small world. And she said, I bet you'll make friends quickly because you were so happy and friendly in H.S. But I'm not that person anymore, not even remotely. Like you said, I've gone through too much. Off and on I have been feeling sad that I wasn't that Happy go-lucky person anymore. I so appreciate your insite you have helped me feel better about who I am now.

  5. It's interesting that you would mention how much we change over the years. Being in Young Women's has really made me think about this a lot. I remember all the things that was such a huge deal when we were in high school. Things that I cried for hours about and now, even though I still have the same dream I did in high school it's not first and foremost in my life. Now my concerns are so different. I cry for different reasons. I get excited over different things. And since I'm a mom it seems that everything comes back to my children. I really appreciate Brian's honesty. He always seems to be so thoughtful in his honesty. Which reminds me of a time he shared his advice in a tramatic moment of "Do you think Richard like me?" Yeah, I'm happy where I am now, and even though I like to look back at the fun times, I'm glad they are in my past.

  6. Thanks for the reminiscing. I found myself thinking about changes in me too, which I hope are for the good. Some of those changes can hurt but aren't we glad when we come out the other side?

  7. Anonymous10:57 AM

    Those were the good high school days. I miss them sometimes but only when my kids are being a pain like last night.

  8. that was great! Jason and I talk about the "carefree" fun all the time and I think you summed it all up great. Thanks for the insights.

  9. Lindsay,

    I've been thinking about this idea off & on since I read this post the other day. I think that for most of us, whoever we are in high school isn't very deep. And the depth that difficult life experiences brings to us as we "grow up" adds a richness to our lives. But probably at a cost of some of the "carefree."

    I have also had the odd thought that who I am works much better in my adult life than it did in high school. I'm sure some of that is the tempering of (all my) years. But I also think that being an intelligent LDS (sometimes wacky) female works better in this life than it did in that one. So I'm way happy to be where I am!