I have been feeling wistful lately, and I am not really sure why.

wistful: full of yearning or longing; sad and thoughtful

Do you ever struggle with knowing how you're "supposed" to feel at various points in your life?

Throughout college, I often browsed other people's facebook pictures and felt like I was missing out on the college experience. I don't know what I thought the college experience was, because I was certainly in college, having an experience. And I had friends tell me at various points that they were envious of the experiences MY friends and I seemed to be having in college (via facebook pictures). I've learned that it shouldn't be surprising when the very person you're jealous of is also jealous of you for a different reason.

I'm sort of doing the same thing with Wedding now. I keep looking at other people's wedding pictures and wondering what people think of mine if they run across them on facebook. Isn't that silly? But somehow knowing what people think of me helps validate my experiences. In fact, I used to sometimes feel like my life wasn't really real until I told someone else about it and they responded. But right now, I'm in such a different place in my life than most of my friends that they can't exactly validate me. I'm in such a different place in my life than even I expected to be at this point (while we're on the subject of expectations). So I guess I'm struggling with not really knowing how I'm supposed to feel, because I don't even know how to validate myself. And that's making me wistful.

And it's also a wistful-making thing to see pictures of your friends doing all of the things you objectively "should" be doing, like ringing the bell on the last day of class. I took a different road, and I'm not complaining. I am so thankful to be where I am with the person I'm with. I just haven't found my niche here yet, my people, my things to do. It will all come. This is not abnormal.

But maybe I should stop putting so much stock in facebook pictures.

Laura Lindeman

Laura Lindeman