I was making dinner the other day while my boys were watching television in the living room. I was putting on a pot of water to boil when suddenly a song floated through the air, into my ear, and up to my brain. It was a song from a commercial that had already played a hundred times but this time it made its way through my thoughts and into my mind. The lyrics were “I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was young.” For some reason that stuck with me. Perhaps it is because that is a desire I have often had as well. I have often wished I knew what I know now, when I was young. It would have made those younger years so much happier. It would have eased my stress, erased my worry, and given me a lot more peace back then.
I found myself singing along to the song from the commercial when suddenly I realized something: “I am still young.” Sure this body has been on this world for more than half a century now. Sure my hair is silver and my face crinkles and wrinkles when I smile. Sure my body is more achy than energetic these days. Yet, on the inside I am still young. On the inside we are all forever young. Perhaps that is why the passage of years on this globe feels so confusing to us at times. We remember our childhoods like it was yesterday. We blink and the baby we once held in our arms is now as tall as we are. We look in the mirror and suddenly there is an old person staring back at us while we still feel like a twenty year old on the inside.
I decided then to enjoy what I know now and to stop regretting the years that have already passed. I still have a lot of time ahead of me to share love, to choose joy, to help others, and to make this world a better place. I still have an eternity of youth ahead of me to do God’s will and to grow into the soul I was meant to be. May you too realize that you are still young were it counts. May you too rejoice in the wisdom life brings and love each day you are given here.
Joseph J. Mazzella