My nostalgia is going away, slowly. Usually, I can reminisce on nights with the guys, piling desktop computers into basements and attics. We would use most of our time getting everything to work before spending the remainder of the Friday evening playing old, outdated video games until the sun rose. The question would then rise at how much fun was being had compared to how tired we were, and we would usually settle on finding extraneous floor space atop wires and cables to spend the remainder of our morning on. Noon would come, and soon parents would be knocking on doors, once again disappointed with the level of crankiness they were now expected to deal with.
It’s an unconventional piece of nostalgia to give away, admittedly. The way people see me now is so different against the years I lived for weekends of getting the chance to create my own sensory deprivation chamber, masked as entertainment. If you’re reading this now, getting more and more confused at how anyone could choose that to be a nostalgic moment in your life, it probably means you had better coping than I. And yes, I was very cool in high school. But for me, life felt crushing at that time, and stress management took form by channeling frustration into a computer screen.
Whether you agree with my having cause to even be nostalgic about this, it made me wonder what the reasoning for it disappearing might be.
Emotional drift over time was my first thought as to why these memories didn’t seem so quintessential to my childhood, all the sudden. I’ve always been told that my best friends will be made in college. Not only did that make me more anxious in choosing college friends, it made me hold tighter to my friends back home, and now our friendships are as strong as when they started nearly ten years ago. That being said, I do believe that the friendships I’ve made, and am still making in college, will follow me through the rest of my life.
I wondered whether video games, as a whole, had simply lost their luster in my eyes. I was addicted for years, not knowing how to quantify how much time I had truly spent devoted to the nothingness that I have to show for them in the end. But truly, if it weren’t for those stupid, outdated games we could still play from time to time to stay connected, our friendships would have suffered. For this reason, I see no harm in moderation, which would almost exaggerate the amount I play nowadays.
No, it clocked soon enough that my mind, coping mechanisms, and spiritual healing was the cause for me to not give power to what for so long acted as an escape.
That is a cool realization. THANKS JESUS.
The more I think, the more I know how deeply rooted things as simple as these can be placeholders in our hearts, blocking the fullness of God from stitching up our lives. Our need to fill pain with numbness comes out through so many things, all of which I continually compare to the cheesiness of middle school motivational posters. School, sports, video games, food, sex, work, Netflix, all “worldly things” us Christians are told to keep in check in order to prioritize God.
Though I don’t believe I live a two-faced life with how I view God and… everything else, I so easily gave away my opportunities for God to work, and the true result of relying on the “everything else” is never gone into detail in any Christian self-help book I’ve read. In total, I don’t think the danger of relying on worldly things is that our prioritization is off, but that the places in our hearts that God can fulfill is seriously restricted.
I am fully on board with the idea that the closer I grow to God, the crazier I look. If I am not basing my life on the world and how I am expected to live through it, I may as well not resemble it. Still, I struggle with wanting to seem relatable, and yet wanting to relate closest with God. Thankfully, the further I grow along with this idea, the more God pinpoints the crutches I have used to fill in the holes that God so desperately wants to satisfy, if we let him. The issue is that many of these things are what I typically identified my relatability by.
This is not to say that I have failed in my way by not instantaneously transitioning out of all my worldly ways to suffice off of God alone; I know for a fact that I do not, and probably never will. The process is ever continuing, as long as I make the choice for God to keep working in this way. After three short years in faith, I am absolutely astounded with the change in my life. God will not instantaneously replace our brains with what his will is perfectly defined within; I believe that would be borderline abuse.
I love it when a simple thought about something like not missing Friday nights with the boys digs into the depths of my withholdings from God. I ask that He continues to work in us to break down the lifelong, malignant growths that pretend to feed us the way He promises to. Nostalgia doesn’t have to be bad, but as my life is brought better each day by Him alone, I find less and less memories that I truly wish I was still a part of. My nostalgia is going away, slowly.
So, good riddance.