Friday, May 19, 2006

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Figuring it Out

Well, with another summer comes yet another edition of this addiction. Yes, the third rendition of "Dome Pondering". It's been awhile, but rather than going into the rambling of calling this a comeback, I will be unlike that proverbial superstar that enters in and out of retirement and just ignore it. I don't like it when they do it. So I won't.

Here is a quote I came across tonight:

"Being grown up isn't nearly as fun as growing up. For these are the best times of our lives"


It is summer and I have returned to the homefront for another 100 days of fun in the sun. However, this summer has already has the makings of a summer like no other. For years, summers consisted of the usual summer job surrounded by many memorable times with friends and close ones. We all can knock off the cob webs in our memory and remember those times. Those were the times where bonding with your friends became an unintentional priority as you felt like you and your crew reigned over the summer. Many times of football and stickball in the streets, "Man Hunt", countless hours of hanging out on the stoop, and many more, were times that we all can relate to and smile when looked back upon. Summer was memorable.

That was Summer. Summer was fun.

Summer was the off-season of life. It was about reminiscing on the last school year and analyzing on the way you've changed and the person you have become. Being able to understand how you've changed and apply it for the next school year to be "that kid" was a puzzle. A game. You intended to crack that puzzle to endure popularity for the fall and beyond. It was a time of dreading that one teacher you knew you would have to deal with in the fall. The one that you unconditionally hated. Summer was transitional.

That was Summer. Summer was fun.

Summer was overcoming obstacles. It was about dealing with life's issues as you became one year closer to being an adult. It was about being carefree, yet learning as you going along. It included dealing with that summer crush and how to act and react when around them. The nerves you got and the stupid things you said when they came around. The many thoughts of how to stretch mom and dad's curphew and possibly how to ignore it all together. Sleeping until the afternoon was the norm. It included dealing with unbearable bosses. The ability to learn from the working experience and the presence to refrain from just telling them off. As the years rolled by, it included ethical decisons. Drugs and other serious decisons become forks in the windy road of life. You chose, you lived, you overcame. Summer was experience.

That was Summer. Summer was fun...

...then came life.

The graduation of High School never dawned on me as something that would be a defining moment in an individual's life. I always thought, sure, we all will go away to school. Meet new friends? Yes. Gain new experiences? Yes. And grow up a bit? Yes. However, call me nieve, but I thought things would indeed change, but not change. Nonetheless, they did. It took me a while, but I have come to learn that summer is fun for new reasons.

Here I am now, three months prior to my senior year of college. Summer no longer consists of the cool things that they once did. Gone are the games, the intrigue, and the experiences. I'm all grown up.

Welcome to life.

Summers now include working and internships. The mighty dollar becomes the driving force of your schedule. Getting enough hours and cash for not only the summer, but the upcoming college year is vital. Summer is hardwork.

Summer is Life. Life is Hard.

Fun now becomes a chess match with friends. Who's schedule matches with who's and who is available when?
It's considered a jackpot when you all can finally get together for a night that is rather eventful. Those few nights will eventually become the talk and memory of the summer. Summer is scarcity.

Summer is Life. Life is Hard...

...then comes freedom.

As an adult you now have to make decisions. These decisons are the mere foundation of what life has become for you. What is best for you and your future? This new found liberty has molded you into a cautious, analytical, skeptical individual. Pro's & Con's, life balances, and regret become fears and motivations. A huge difference from the once care free summer. Summer is evolving.

Summer is liberty. Liberty is stressful.

Life now becomes what you feared the most in the past summers - real. Jobs are no longer for extra cash, but are needed for income, experience, a career and self fulfillment. The preparation of what to do after college and where everything in your life fits into that "grand scheme" of things. Liberty is methodical.

Summer is liberty. Liberty is stressful.

Oh so confusing...

Like the commercial goes, "Life comes at you fast". Although times have changed, summer remains a special time of the year. Afterall, it's full of life and liberty!

Yet, figuring it all out has become the fun part.