“You only live once. But if you do it right, once is enough.” ~Mae West
I started another post a few days ago on the idea of unconventionality in life. It’s so scattered and messy right now, that it’s not ready to be posted, but I hope that I can post it soon. With my dad passing and the school year ending within the last week, I have been very contemplative about life in general and while writing that post my thoughts began to spiral. My insomnia is back, so I have been awake, hours each night, just laying in bed with my mind wandering all over the place and I can’t seem to make sense of any of it.
So much has been happening in the past few days, weeks, even months, that I am having trouble processing what it all means within the realm of my life. I feel completely turned around, with no idea if I am coming or going, or simply sitting still. And with no real production or work that has to take place during the day, since I am off for the summer, I am feeling quite lost.
If you know me in real life, you already know that I am not good at compromise. It’s either this way or that way but it can’t be both. In the simplest definition, I tend to be an extremist. I usually go from far left to far right with no stops in the middle. I tend to be going either 100 miles per hour, or at a complete snails pace.
I’ve often battled with the conflicting ideologies of “you only live once” and “you can’t always get what you want” going back and forth between them. Depending on my day, or mood, I always seem to be either completely for one or the other. Are there times when one is more appropriate than the other? Do I choose one based on convenience? Is it “YOLO” when I want to be selfish and “You can’t always get what you want” when I feel like being a responsible adult? I wish I could just pick one and decide to live my life that way. Consistency is key and at this point I am so far removed from it that I literally can’t even think in a straight line.
At what point does “you only live once” simply become a cop-out for taking the easy way out? Can we really have our cake and eat it too? When is it ok to be selfish and when is it not? What if our actions, while making us happier and more fulfilled, hurt the ones we love? At what point should we just accept the wonderful things we have: a roof over our heads, family, friends, a good job, health insurance, and stop bitching about happiness, being fulfilled, finding a purpose?
Can we really have it all and, really, should we even be trying to?