Wild and free; hasn’t been in a while
I smell the newspaper of my youth. Whenever I say/use ‘euphoric’ I’m transported back to the 2000s, in the column of my comparative lit professor where he’d play the in-joke with his equally famous writer-friend, ‘Krip, are you back from Euphoria?’ Whenever I admit to this emotion I actually feel being transported to the state of Euphoria, a place.
It does smell of newspaper, freshly printed words, and hot cement walls; in the background are distant birds chirping and the occasional vehicles cruising by. Beneath my chest wall I can’t feel my heart beat. It is quietly suspended in the late afternoon air, the unbearable lightness of being.
One year and six months of depression does this to you. Something like Tim Burton’s ‘Maybe I’d been clinically depressed and didn’t know it at the time.’ Mine could be defined as the lack of energy to socialize, workaholism, utter selfishness, and abuse on the body all bottled up in my tiny, bony frame. I had attributed it to quarterlife crisis for late-bloomers. But, quite recently, I watched happythankyoumoreplease one day and started to be fine: letting go of my flexible cynicism and allowing the universe to love on me. Pursue happyness and radiate life. Wisdom crap, as one friend would say. But I’m not wasting my time with other kinds of crap.
One year and six months after–
All that has led me to this state of euphoria. To the twentysomething who’s finally heeding Steve Jobs’ sound advice, living like I’m dying. Everyday since I turned 25 I’ve been having this monologue, ‘If I’m dying today, at least I’ve communicated with my family and closest friends. I’ll die satisfied. Nothing important has been amiss.’ Or ‘This could be the day I bump into him!’ (Yeah, this could be quarterlife crisis.)
Beneath all the Facebook status updates, tweets, texts, emails, and occasional blog posts, I am happy without a doubt. I need not end up somewhere in Mexico to find my peace of mind. Borrowing words from Dexter Mayhew, it’s like everyone has a central dilemma in their life, and mine was can I be in committed, mature, loving adult relationships and still criticize or ignore the people surrounding me? The answer is I can’t. Once you’ve worked that out, it all gets a bit simpler.
I am in Euphoria. Some may find it surreal to be staying in such a place for extended periods, so they go back to their old routines, eventually to their old lives. I say, with a few tweaks in our thinking, we can live beyond that. Just as Harvey Specter illustrates.
I guess this state creates more time, energy, and mental space for things that I’ve been wanting to prioritize since one year and six months ago– relationships, work, travel, finances, the grown-up stuff. I’ve read once that my generation has been in this constant struggle to postpone adulthood partly because we don’t have cities to rebuild, food to manufacture, or fields to grow again after a war. But we have lives to build, souls to feed, and minds to grow. This is our brand of war. I know I sound preachy, but what the hell.
PS Once I wrote about going places with two of my closest friends, Ed and Mia. There will be no more wasted plane tickets in my book this year, and even in the next. One more week and I’m getting a tan somewhere near here.