Don't Take Life Too Seriously...?

May 22, 2012
By Anonymous

“Don’t take life to seriously…?”

I was once walking through an airport, on my way home from a vacation that I didn’t want to end. When I saw this shirt that said “Don’t take life to seriously, nobody gets out alive anyway.” I remember thinking to myself, huh, that’s a funny way to think about it. Because I guess that’s its true, I mean I don’t really know, actually. And I can’t help thinking whether or not the maker of this t-shirt had intended it to be funny or if there was a deeper meaning to this little aphorism I had stumbled upon. I started to wonder about life, and the way people view it. Taking it seriously, versus coasting through it without a care in the world. Life is a circle, we all know that, and I don’t mean to sound morbid, and dark, or disturbing when I say that we all live, and then eventually we all die.

I admit that I will never fully understand the concept of life. I know it starts out with the day we are born. We live our infancy in a blur, and then advance through our toddler years in the blink of an eye. We turn into elementary kids, and next into teenagers. We all worry about different things. Our test grades, our prom dates, who got caught, or who barely got away. Some people care more about certain things than others, obviously. There are those who are thinking forward, so serious about their future. And then there are those who don’t care the least bit. And then I look around and think about how I wish I could be the kid who can ace a test they don’t study for, or that super talented girl who can play the violin. Then I remember that I’m the one studying for hours and just barely getting the grade I had hoped for, and the girl whose piano teacher quit on her when she was little. That’s what I hate the most. But am I taking life to seriously by thinking these things? Am I so focused on others’ lives, that I don’t realize how lucky I am? How some other people wish to have the things that I have. My dad once told me this old saying “ I cried because I had no shoes, and then I saw a man who had no feet.” I never appreciated the true meaning of these words. But I think I’m beginning to understand that I shouldn’t take life too seriously, and constantly focus on other people. Because the fact is, there is always someone who has more than me, and always who is going to have less. But now, in these important high school years, we all care about the smallest things, and I just don’t understand it.

After all, our lives are so much bigger than high school, though most of us seem to forget that. But then what? What happens after the proms, the SAT’s, and the tearful breakups? We go to college, graduate, get some job that we will spend almost the rest of our lives doing, fixated on how much money she makes, and what kind of car he drives. Or, we can spend the rest of our lives doing what makes us happy. After all, what we think is all that matters, right?

Then I think of that t-shirt I saw in the airport, and I wonder what it actually means, how seriously am I supposed to take life, and how do I feel about it. Because in the end, it’s not going to matter, is it?

The author's comments:
Inspired by the novel Tuesdays With Morrie

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