Ah, “YOLO,” a phrase made popular by Drake and overused by teenagers running away from their responsibilities and making stupid choices. For those who don’t know, YOLO means You Only Live Once. Example; “I’m going to [insert a clearly stupid idea that you know you’ll get in trouble for] because YOLO!”
That’s not how it works – at least for me. As you’ve heard from my latest blog, I’ve lived a complicated life and I don’t feel like making it more complicated than it already is by YOLO-ing. It should be the other way around, if you only live once, you should make every moment count. Don’t just go around doing things that you’ll regret in the future, but do things that you’ll want to remember in the future and things you’ll be proud of. I have seen the life flush away from my friend’s face because of “what’s wrong with another drink, right? YOLO!” On the flip side, I’ve seen relationships blossom because of “Why not tell him you like him? YOLO.” The term itself isn’t the problem, it’s the way we use it.
I say these types of things because I tend to be the “mom” in the group of friends and being the “designated-everything” has taught me a thing or two. Being the “sensible one” isn’t all that bad anyway. I get that trust factor from all my friends’ parents, which is a great thing, plus, whenever I feel like “wilding out” and acting as a “normal teen” from time to time, my parents allow it and even encourage it. But this is my POV: If you only live once, wouldn’t you want to make it amazing?
Sometimes I think that the fact that I got a second shot at life gives me an advantage. I know the value of life; how precious it is – and how easily it can be taken away from you. It makes me try harder to earn my right to live and prove that I was worthy of that chance. I’ve spoken against bullying, I’ve taken a stand against body-shaming, I’ve tried to advocate for people with heart defects such as mine as best as I can. Those are the issues that concern me most and maybe they are not what moves you, and that’s okay. Maybe writing a blog is not your thing, but that’s not the only cool thing you can do. Make a change. Make a difference. We all can do it. Whether it’s in the community or in your school, a change is a change. Sounds overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Start small.
If this were your last day, would you be satisfied with how you lived? I think about this a lot, and I know that my bucket list (that gets additions on the daily) will never be complete and I’m okay with that as long as my one and only life is one with meaning, and one that matters. No need for a huge contribution to society, an earth-shattering scientific discovery, or solving a 3-page mathematical equation. I want to change someone’s life and that’s good enough for me.
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