Tuesday, December 6, 2011

What I Got

"FOMO"- heard of it?  Last week, while I was getting a decent cardio workout on the elliptical machine at the gym, I read (and laughed) about this new phenomenon "fear of missing out."  The premise is that social media allows people to put the best, happiest version of themselves out there for the world to see.... which makes everyone else jealous, envious, and fearful that they're missing out.

On the one hand, I could see this happening.  There are times when I go on Facebook and one of my "friends" (i.e. worked with me at my first job, went to my grade school, but wasn't in my class, or is a friend of a friend's acquaintance) is doing something that looks amazing - standing in front of a gorgeous waterfall, eating a decadent (and decidely heart-unhealthy) meal with friends, or watching the sunset on the beach while the rest of us are freezing our asses off.  Recently, a friend lamented an upcoming birthday, worried that she'd "missed out" on milestones that "everyone else" had achieved.  This gave me pause.  Mostly because while there's grass on either side of the fence, neither side is greener (unless your neighbor is my husband- he is METICULOUS about our lawn and indeed, it is greener!)  Falling in love is dreamy and wonderful, but relationships are HARD work.  Having a child feels like a miracle, but raising one is exhausting.

There are things I wish I would have done including, but not necessarily limited to:
  • Spending a semester of college abroad (in Chile or Rome)
  • More public speaking (I get the worst stage fright)
  • Continued piano lessons beyond the age of 10 (although I can play a bit)
  • Living somewhere besides Chicago and St. Louis before "settling down" (although, what does that really mean?!)
  • Eaten bacon and ganache every day (okay, not really, but if I knew I was destined for a heart healthy diet, maybe I would have gone all out!)
This might seem like a silly list of inconsequential things, but they sort of matter to me (and my perceived quality of life).  Do I feel like I missed out because I haven't done any of these things - maybe a little bit.  But my life took me in a different direction, and for all the things I may not have done or all the things I don't have, there are so many beautiful precious things that grace my life daily. 

Life is made up of choices - there are always tradeoffs and contrary to popular belief (or perception), you may not feel like you have it all. But, the thing is - you probably have your health, people who love you, and people you love.  Over the last few months and especially during this holiday season, I've tried to focus on what I do have.  And those things are perfect for me.  (Try not to be too jealous :)  )

Sorry for the mildly corny and ridiculous concluding quote, but you get the idea!

"Well, life is too short, so love the one you got
'Cause you might get run over or you might get shot
Never had to battle with no bulletproof vest
Never start static I just get it off my chest
Take a small example, take a tip from me
Take all of your money, give it all to charity

Love is what I got
Within my reach....
.... It all comes back to you, you'll finally get what you deserve
Try and test that you're bound to get served

Love's what I got
Don't start a riot
You'll feel it when the dance gets hot

Lovin', is what I got, I said remember that
Lovin', is what I got, I said remember that" - Sublime

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