Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Turning Ahead

Every so often, I will have someone come into the 'brary and confess that she always flips ahead and reads the end of the book.

"I can't stand not knowing!" She tells me.

I have never once skipped ahead in a book. But still I understand.

I completely understand.

There is nothing more that I would like to have than the ability to turn to my last chapter and see how it all ends. Do I live a long life? Am I happy? Are there kids? Do I stay in this career? Is Lucy always my very best friend? Do I get another tattoo? Do I still drink mango tea every afternoon?

Knowing would eliminate so much anxiety.

I wouldn't need every detail. I wouldn't want every detail. I still want to live it. I still want the experience, the surprise, the living. But, if I could, I would flip ahead. To the end. To that neat little summation of my life. One paragraph. This is who I loved, this is what I did, this is what I valued, this how I lived my life. 

Because I feel like maybe I could stop and appreciate my life for what it is right now if I knew that I wasn't the single girl forever.

Maybe I would take longer showers.

Maybe I would buy more shoes. 


EJ said...

Understand this thought completely. 30 in two weeks and on some levels I FEEL I have no idea what I am doing. None. I've taken solace in knowing I'm growing and will continue to get better...but truly I just want to have a glimpse of the future so I can eliminate all the little things I over-obsess about in the present.

All I could say...take longer showers and buy more shoes or all the other maybe's anyway.

Heather said...

oh, i don't think i want to know how my story ends. i think it would affect all my choices now, and it wouldn't be in a positive way. what i like about not knowing is that everything in the future - whether i marry, if i stay in this industry or shift to something else (psychology has been a consideration), if i have kids or if i stay an aunt forever, if i go to grad school or stick with collecting various certifications and experience instead - is constantly shifting based on the decisions i am making in the present. knowing that it ends in old age, with grandkids, might make me lazy now. like, why bother going out to that networking event if i know i shuffle off this mortal coil having achieved that vice presidency i want? the answer is, of course, because maybe i meet connections who help me springboard to that kind of position at that networking event. a teacher in some class at one point in my life (high school, maybe?) said that if you knew you died by drowning, you'd avoid water. and that's exactly what my brain would do. it'd see how my book ends, and then it'd go on autopilot, looking for specific things and expecting specific things, and it would wind me up tighter than ... i don't even know. something tightly wound.

i like that things are constantly shifting. i like that i have stopped feeling like i'm waiting for someone or something to come along to make me a whole person, and am instead going out and making myself whole, through pursuing things i like to do and working on learning to like and accept myself. i like that i am pursuing what i want to pursue in all aspects of my life, and working on getting the things i want, even if the end result is different from what i hoped for.

fwiw, though, i have never ever ever been the kind of reader who can skip to the end of a book. it goes against every fiber of my being.

Danielle said...

You know that generally the last bit of the book (generally a paragraph) showcases what the narrator learned about themselves or what came to light within during a tumultuous time.

Occasionally I'll skip and read the last couple of sentences, but I cannot read the last chapter. As much as I wish I could read the last chapter of my book, well, I just can't even imagine it.

JBean said...

Ooooh I liked this post! I never skip to the back of books although I have been tempted on occasion. As for life I dk. I think if I could I might want to know. I have many of the same doubts and fears as you so I think I would want to know at least if I'm happy and fulfilled at the end? Maybe not much more than that though.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Yes. This. I can completely relate. I just want someone to tell me that they got a sneak peak at the way life played out and that I don't need to worry because it's going to be mostly great (I know there are bound to be not great things). I don't skip ahead either but I definitely wish I could do that with my life at times!

Unknown said...

What Heather said, make yourself whole as a person instead of waiting. For you it's longer showers and shoes. I told Abe if something ever happens with us, I'm buying a tiny house and disconnecting from society.

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