They say you only live once, but I’ve lived and loved and died a thousand times. All of these former selves and frames of mind. I hardly remember the old me, or the ones before that.
Behind me is a road map of past lives and closed doors. There’s the door I shut quietly as I tip-toed out, never looking back. There’s a door or two or three that are piles of ash now. Then there are the doors that are left wide open. Those are the places or opportunities that I think about. The versions of me I can sometimes be if I would just decide where it is I want to go.
There are doors in front of me, too. They are everywhere. The options at my fingertips, waiting for me to turn the knob.
In a past life, I thought I knew all the answers. I thought I knew who I was and what I wanted, where I was going and how to get there. As it turns out, people change. We grow and learn and mold along the way. We close the doors to our old selves. Born and renewed in our new realms over and over again until we’re closer to our own real truth.
Sometimes I look back and wonder what it would be like if I chose a different life. If I picked door one instead of door two. If I were a little more mature before going through all those growing pains.
Of course, we carry pieces from each of our lives lived. Sometimes we carry regret or shame and we wear it on our new selves, forgetting that this is not who we are anymore.
So instead of carrying the wrongs of all of the old me’s into this new era, I’m learning to shed the weight. Life is short and all of the changes of self we go through while we’re here are for a purpose. They are leading us somewhere.
So I carry all the good forward. I mature and I grow and I’m proud of the doors I’ve closed. Some choices are harder than others and there have been times where I accidentally closed doors, leaving myself overwhelmed and in mourning of the death of that old me.
But I am here.
And I would close every door again if it led me to you.