A Decade Gone By

So imagine this: 

It's 2010, you're sitting in your room blasting "Ridin' Solo" by Jason Derulo after your boyfriend of two weeks broke up with you. You're checking your flip phone, texting all your best friends about your broken heart, while trying not to go over your 500 texts per month limit. 

It's 2011, and this time, you're at your best friend's boy/girl birthday party jamming out to "Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO. Some lady named Kim Kardashian just got divorced after 72 days, and Adele released "Someone Like You," a song you're playing on repeat. 

It's 2012, you're preparing for the world to end while Googling all the reasons why this rumor even started in the first place. That Kim Kardashian you thought was irrelevant is getting married to Kanye West. You go to your friend's house, blare "We Are Never Getting Back Together" by Taylor Swift, and talk about all the boys who you can't wait to talk to once high school starts. You're ready for a new beginning.

It's 2013, and you've got the hang of this "high school" thing. You've become friends with people who already have their licenses, and you roll up to school in the mornings blasting "Started from the Bottom" by Drake. You're cool. You're carefree. Your biggest problem right now is whether or not you'll get asked to homecoming.

It's 2014, and you've met a boy you think you're going to marry. You're laying on his car, sitting in your high school parking lot after dusk, listening to "Thinking Out Loud" by Ed Sheeran, and your stomach is full of butterflies. You tell yourself, "He's the one, he'll never hurt me." 

It's 2015, and he hurt you. But luckily, you keep busy with extra curriculars and hanging out with your friends on the weekends. You can drive now. You have a whole new sense of freedom. You meet someone new, and you move on. You and your friends are recording yourselves dancing to "Hit the Quan." You're worried about how many likes you're getting on Instagram.

It's 2016, and high school is coming to an end. The past four years were full of firsts and lasts. You've bought your last prom dress, but you filled out your first college application. "Closer" by The Chainsmokers and  Halsey was just released, and you're singing at the top of your lungs although you can't quite relate to the lyrics. You're biggest worry is what college you'll attend, and what will you do without all your friends?

It's 2017, and college is kicking your ass. You're attending parties at frat houses every weekend, but you watch movies with your friends on Friday, because campus is dead on Friday nights. You finally realize what the "freshman 15" is and your bank account has never been so low. Your biggest worry is keeping up your GPA while balancing work and your social life. 

It's 2018, and you just got the iPhone 8 Plus. You tell your friends, "I have the nicest camera, so we can take photos on my phone." You're using your fake ID to get into bars, and you're craving the day you turn 21. "God's Plan" by Drake is playing in your car while you drive home for the holidays. The #MeToo movement has gone global, and you find yourself relating more and more to women's stories. You're biggest worry is whether or not you're a victim, or if you're just dramatic.

Now imagine this:

It's 2019, and the decade is coming to an end. You're thinking back on the last ten years wondering if you did all you could to better yourself and the ones around you. Your biggest worries are if you made a difference; Did you save enough money? Did you work hard enough? Did you let your family down? Did you say enough? Did you stay true to yourself? 

It's amazing how our worries start off so small, and each year of life those worries only become bigger. We grow, and our worries grow with us. I ask you to take a minute and think back on the past decade and forget the worries you had and the demons you faced. Forget the heart ache and the empty "I'm sorry's" from the people who were supposed to mean the most to you. Instead, think back on what you did for others. For society. For yourself. 

In the words of my favorite lyricist and artist, Taylor Swift— "it was the end of a decade, but the start of an age."