Matthew Lu | Art by Phyllis Lee
let’s zoom in over there.
Do you see the little girl over there surrounded by her friends? The one in the flowery skirt? She wants more dolls to play with, to join the ones she has now. And they’ll do each other’s hair, enjoy a tea party, and become the bestest of friends. She can’t wait to grow up, and do all sorts of “grown-up” things. It’ll be a long time until she can do everything she wants. Instead, she’ll only be able to live out that life through her dolls. And for now, that’s enough.
How about the kid over there? The one shuffling the deck of cards? Every day, he looks forward to playing cards and board games on Friday nights with his family. With his parents being constantly busy with work, the only family time he ever gets is then. Though he wishes that they would spend more time together, those laughter-filled nights are really something else. And for now, that’s enough.
what about me?
If you looked closely into my room, you’d find polaroids stashed in the back of the drawer. With the date written in Sharpie on each photo, you’d notice, every year, I’d be at the beach on the 21st of June. And you’ll find me there again, this year.
But, you won’t find a picture this year.
It’s not like I won’t be there.
It was just, last year, I saw everyone at the fireworks holding their cameras, wanting to capture the moment. My regretfully forgotten camera sat at home that night, alone. But that night, the fireworks were more beautiful. They sparkled brighter, stronger, louder. Maybe, I could’ve shared that moment with my camera. But then it wouldn’t be only mine. Call me selfish, but I go on more journeys alone now.
After all, how could I relive the moment if I never lived in it in the first place?
is it, living in the present?
I guess I would call it that. But recently, I think I’ve been looking forward to the future. Not the far future, per se, but just what might come soon. I think I want to find more moments to hold on to.
let’s zoom out.
I want to go to the beach again, to hear the squawk of the seagulls, to listen to the rustling of the waves, to catch the salty scent of the sea.
I want to find a tree, draped with vines, where I can sit, and watch the leaves of the tree dance with the wind. I’ll hold the dandelion tightly, blow, and the seeds will go lightly.
I guess, I’m excited to see what might just come next.
And for now, that’s enough.
would you call that living for tomorrow?