I pulled the phone away from my ear and held it towards the window. Her words bounced off the pane and dissipated into the air.
I already know there is no real answer to that question.
I remember the day it all stopped making sense.
It was the day I moved to Los Angeles.
It all began on the first year of my new decade in a new city.
Start line go.
Forward movement that sputtered with an untightened axle.
The feeling of dancing on wobbly feet through the streets of a wobbly city. A city that danced the same child-like dance.
And each year, the tango became more and more impetuous.
The decisions more desperate.
Drunken journal entries explained that I never understood it was part of the game. That what I was feeling was normal.
But how could it be normal?
Everything I have always known to be right and true was suddenly not.
Adults broke my heart.
The pedestal that I kept raising higher and higher, until I could no longer see what was sitting on there, came crashing down around me.
My foundation was set off by the knobby, old roots that struck through and had their way with me.
If life was going to get harder, then I would change. I would become easier.
I exited the city where the journey began, for a new spot to curl up into.
“I’m just an animal looking for a home”.
And the road became less bumpy, the puzzle pieces started to fit together, and all the cliches started to make sense.
So I thought.
I’ve only come to realize that it will never truly make sense.
There will be many moments of clarity, but the picture will always remain hazy and off in the distance.
New experiences will happen time and time again. You will fail. You will succeed. You will feel unbridled joy and unimaginable pain. You will be good at your job. Maybe you won’t know what the hell you want to do until you’re 50. You will meet someone you want to spend the rest of your life with. Maybe this person doesn’t love you back. You climb to the very top of the corporate ladder. You get laid off. You get married to someone you maybe didn’t love as much as another. Maybe you live with someone that you never grow tired of waking up next to. Maybe you’ll start your own company. You will have a child. Four children. Maybe you can’t have children. Maybe you will get divorced. Maybe your spouse will die. You will lose all your hair. Maybe you’ll get fat. Maybe you’ll live in that 4,000 square foot house like you always wanted to. Maybe you stay home to take care of your aging parents. You’ll get sued, win the Nobel peace prize, go into the Army, get arrested, save a life, almost drown, invent a special fry cooker, start a non-profit organization, go to psychotherapy, adopt a rescue dog, never know how to be a good parent, travel the world. You’ll long for somewhere you once lived, or have never been. You’ll dream about your first love. Maybe you will die at 40 of a heart attack. Maybe one day you give up. Or maybe you will live to 100, your life full of love and happiness and you will ease on understanding that it’s all ok.
I pulled the phone back to my ear just in time to catch the end of my mother’s reply.
“It never gets easier, Lauren. You just learn how to deal with life.”