"The journey's the thing," my sociologyteacher quoted one September afternoon. He scribbled the words on the blackboard,telling us to copy them into our notebooks. While my classmates lamented the hot,humid weather, I pondered the statement. I thought the four simple words conveyeda meaningful message, and wondered if I ever appreciated the "journey"of my own life. After a few moments' deliberation, the bell rang and I hurried tomy next destination.
A week later, I found myself hoping the day would goquickly because I was looking forward to my weekend plans. I suddenly rememberedthose words my teacher had written on the board, and their meaning becameclearer. Do I ever truly appreciate events as they are occurring, I wondered, oram I always looking toward the future?
Regretfully, I have wished away asignificant amount of time anticipating future events. During the past year,especially, I have spent a lot of time thinking about college. While planning myfuture is certainly a worthy project, I now try to focus on the past and presentas well. I regret that I did not completely value Christmas parties with myfriends, long telephone conversations and meaningful class discussions as theywere taking place. Although I will still look forward to upcoming events, my goalis to try to appreciate today.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.