The Road Not Taken

“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought, and the thought has found words”-Robert Frost

Let’s break some rules: Larisa Moneyland, Marren Tumers, Rachel Marckel, Tarra Moinyhan, Semra Mareai, and me, Christa Louise Susan Zwart had an amazing time dancing with socks on our ears in Elliott at 23:42. It was 4 degrees outside, stars shining, and the moon smiling down at us. I often treat rules as guidelines that can be broken on a qualitative basis within certain parameters. Oesp.

There was something very special about last night. Everybody knows no one goes to Elliott on Thursdays, especially if there is also an event somewhere else during the same time frame. The bar was lonely, the lights too bright, and the music too soft. But we went anyways.

At first my socially-acceptable alarm was screaming in my ears and telling my legs to run the opposite direction. But after not too many of Larisa’s unpersuasive, highly philosophical words, “I don’t care”, my awkward spirit took over my frontal cortex, and the fun began.

We danced like no one was watching, like no one was there. Because the irony lie in the truth of the metaphor. And it was the greatest feeling ever.

I find I am constantly struggling between what I should do, and what I want to do. I always want to be the honest one who does things with a little less filter. Because even though it’s socially awkward, sometimes sends unintentionally mixed meanings, and feels slightly uncomfortable, it’s the truth, and there’s something courageous about the person who can look discomfort squarely in the eye. And celebrate it. Because most of the time I don’t know what I’m doing, how I’m feeling, or what I ultimately want. Shouldn’t my actions reflect that to an extent? Or perhaps I know what I want and what I’m doing, but it’s not the most efficient, or it still comes off as unintelligible to others. But I’m also smart enough to know that that isn’t always the smart thing to do, sadly. Jobs need to be secured, networks need to be polished, and poker faces are how you sway the contract to your advantage. I can play the player, find the loophole, and get out of jail free with the right amount of incentive. It feels fake, and I don’t like that sometimes I like that I like it, or that I’m good at it, but that’s the road most taken, and the road others expect you to take. The road that leads towards success.

Or so I thought, because success is relative. By redefining success, I can do just the right amount of what I want, without compromising my values, my happiness, or hurting other people’s feelings (I hope). And I can embrace the child inside of me who laughs at any juxtaposition of situational irony with double meaning.

Because I am the person who stands in the sun to photosynthesize, has friends who are 60+ years in age, and boldly messages a compliment to the handsome stranger across the way hoping that was the last time I’d ever see him…just to find out I’d have to formally introduce myself a few hours later.

So cheers to being your bravest, most authentic self, unapologetically. What a success!(ful embarrassment at times)

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