Moving Out, Plus Imagined Life Advice From My 18-Year-Old Self

I’ve spent the past few days packing up and getting ready to move into the van.

Actually, I’ve slept in it the past two nights just to ease the transition. Yup, right out in the parking lot. Sort of like camping in the backyard. It’s surprisingly cozy. Wood panels, curtains, a comfy sleeping bag; it reminds me of a cabin in the woods, except for the midnight sounds of my neighbors parking their cars next to me.

My birthday is sort of interrupting the big move. I turn 30 friggin’ years old today, so I’m driving down to my hometown to spend the evening with family and old friends. It’ll be nice, but I really hate being the center of attention. I’ll probably compensate by getting embarrassingly drunk. It just seems appropriate.

Before I short-circuit the process with toxic yeast poop, I can’t help but reflect. I wonder what my 18-year-old self would think of me now. For all his lack of life experience, my teenage self was admirably clear about who he was. I think he would be a little exasperated with my lack of accomplishments, but I also think he would approve of what I’ve tried to do. He would especially applaud my current lifestyle experiment, revering Thoreau and Kerouac as he did.

Above all, I think he would beg me to simply be more confident; to trust myself and stop worrying so much about what other people think, or what my life should look like. You can’t help but be who you are — you might as well feel okay about it.

Anyway, I’ve got shit to do. Moves are always more hectic than I expect them to be.

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