All your life has brought you here

I was in high school and I was talking to a friend about the college entrance exams we were going to have in a few days. He asked me how I felt about the test that was coming up. I answered, “I think I’m ready… I’ve been studying for at least 11 years for this… This is the moment.”

It seemed like I’d been waiting for that moment my whole life.

I didn’t pass that entrance exam, so I guess I wasn’t as prepared as I thought. And I know that elementary school is not exclusively aimed at college entrance exams, nor should high school be, although in practice it is, at least in Brazil. And, of course, our life is not just about school obligations and a lot happens in the seventeen years between birth and the (first) vestibular.

But even so, it seemed like my whole life was summed up in that moment.

***

Your whole life, every single incident, has brought you here. You are the result of all your failures and successes, all your setbacks and fortunes. This moment here, now, is the result of all the life you have already lived and it will determine everything you will still live. Your whole life has brought you here.

This is, therefore, all you have. Here and now. Everything that has passed, is gone. The only thing that really exists is this present moment that continuously turns the future into the past.

***

I like to think that my whole life has brought me here because it gives the present the value it deserves. The past of each one of us is filled with bad and good things: mistakes and successes, shame and pride, pleasures and discomforts. We may like it or not, or more commonly like some things and dislike others. But regardless of our feelings, truth is: all those moments have brought us here. For better or for worse.

That is the value of the present: it is a summary of everything you have experienced, all the choices and impositions. If you are here now, the way you are, you owe it to your whole life, not only to the good moments.

That is another important thing about this thought. We usually give a lot of relevance to salient events, but the truth is that life is made in the background. Habits, systems, routine often count more than the major incidents (or maybe not, according to Nassim Taleb).

I like to think that my whole life has brought me here also to remind me that life is full of bad luck, but that is no reason for stress. All my bad luck has brought me here.

All my suffering has brought me here.

All my struggle has brought me here.

This is the moment. This is my burning hand. This is the synthesis of all my past that will define my entire future. The only time is now.

My whole life comes down to this moment.

My whole life has brought me here.

18.12.20. Toda a sua vida lhe trouxe até aqui

***

Original text in Portuguese.

>> Contact me if you note any English mistakes.

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