Monday, November 10, 2003

Bus Stop Blues.

Whilst waiting at the bus stop, I stood thinking of all the morals and principles that I wanted to enforce in this column. I wanted to warn the young nation against the dangers of letting your fantasies destroy your dreams. I searched my mind for all the strong words I could think of to indignantly protest my viewpoints. I wanted all my readers to feel as angry and as strongly as I do... I want people to protect their dreams!
Sadly, I didn´t come up with many of those words, so instead, I share with you my grief.

The wonderful age that sits between childhood and adulthood is that in which I sit in. I´m no longer bound by my parent´s rules and laws, nor am I bound by their responsibilities... these years, are the blank page years. It is in these years that we all write the storyline of our future and we can be as creative as we want! These are the years that we can all shape and mould our present as we like. We have free reign over our destinies, it is here that we chose which roads to follow. Some of your will fight for your chosen careers, others will travel and see the world... all of us will try and make the most of our secret dreams.

My father once said that time would catch up to me. “One day, you too will hear the ticking of the clock...”. His words are so fresh in my memory that I find it hard to believe that he said them on my eighteenth birthday, five years ago! Has five years gone by already? I take a look in the mirror and hardly believe the changes since then. So much has happened, changed and grown... five years have already gone by!
At that time, my response had been “Eighteen ´til I die!” I believed that the spirit was as old as you wanted it to be, my father didn´t disagree with me but he warned me that the world would not stop and that when I least expected it, times would change and I would either have to change with it or live in the past. More than ever, I remember my father´s words.

I have a friend who looks like a walking, talking, Ripcurl advert. Besides her cool shades, bellyring, eyebrow piercing and tank tops, she also wears shoes that gives her at least another 15cm on her height. She is never found alone and you most probably will find her socialising with some new friend that she´s just made or planning another group event. This friend of mine dreams of being a professional skateboarder and wants sing in front of audiences. She plans to travel the world to meet new people and spread the word of God that she so lovingly cherishes. This friend of mine is twenty two years old and pregnant.

Of course in this day and age, this situation is one that only happens by will or irresponsibility and my gullible friend pleads the second. Being the first person to be told of the third party due in nine months, my reaction was one of shock. My friend who had fought with me because she was too embarrased to book an appointment to see a gynaecologist was suddenly going to be forced to see one every month for the next nine months! I didn´t know wether to yell at her or cry with her!

It´s been a few days after the inicial shock and acceptance is all that is left to do after having a bomb like that fall on your head. I don´t think that my friend knows that i´m sitting at my computer at 3:00am in the morning because my heart keeps bleeding for her. Besides the fact that the circuimstances are bad and that she´s totally unprepared, it´s the loss of her freedom that is killing me the most. As her best friend, I have dreamt with her every dream she´s ever had and I know how much she will be sacrificing. I´d feel happier if I knew that my friend was relishing in the fact that now she´s going to build the family she´s always dreamed of... but I can´t see her shine, my friend is not smiling and my heart cries with her.

Last night I watched a wedding tape of a couple that got married. I tried not to remember that the divorce rate is up to 58% worldwide and as I watched two people that I care so much about pledge their lives to each other, I prayed fiercely in my heart that they would be part of the 42% of the world that works out. I also got to see a part where I was dancing in the arms of someone who I once thought was capable of making me happy. Anyone who didn´t know better and had watched us would´ve written a fairytale future like the wedding we had attended and I chided myself at allowing myself to once fool myself into fantasizing that very fairytale. Luckily, fairydust eventually wears off... but the damage that it can cause in that time frame is incalculable.

Whilst I checked my watch again for the bus that never came, I argued that even whilst under the fairydust, I had enough good sense to keep myself out of trouble... but one good look at the car parked in front of me felt like a crack of the whip of honesty penetrating into my soul. The silver Renault Megane chilled my body from head to toe, it was a living reminder of my own insanity whilst under the influence of the moonlight. I realised that living our fantasies can be like playing Russian roullette with our hearts.

One by one, the people around you fall out this freedom phase. You begin to attend more weddings and baptisms and you begin to lose touch with the conversation that once focused around the latest shoe sales and now focuses around the latest household detergents sale. I´m not one to feel pressured by this, nor do run from. I guess that i´m just wary of the things people get themselves into because they feel alone or they feel that it´s the next step in their lives. I often encourage people to follow their hearts and take risks. It isn´t today that I´ve changed my mind and hopefully never will, but I do warn people about chasing their fantasies... once the fairy dust wears off, all that is left is reality and your dreams will have passed you by.

Perhaps not all is lost for my pregnant friend, it is an unwritten chapter that nobody can predict and I pray that her dreams will nonetheless still be fulfilled. Hope and faith can be frail but they can´t be killed! Worrying would get me nowhere and faith is what would take me all the way. I left the weight of my worries behind as I got on the bus and said goodnight to the Renault Megane.

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