We know it makes no sense to think that you are moving somewhere in life. Maybe you can accumulate money but it is hard to accumulate friends and at any moment any life gains, material or other, can be reversed by something that comes from without or within. You must love the vagaries of the journey, then. And know that nothing is definitively acquired. But it is more complex than this, for if you do not defer some pleasure and accept some pain there is no way you can arrive at the appreciation of deeper pleasure. If you do not learn your French verbs, you will never read Proust and that pleasure will forever remain unavailable to you. So you juggle living for the moment with living for the future with what you hope is the right dose of both.
What becomes of us? As a child you look forward and try and imagine your face tomorrow. You try and picture where you will be standing in twenty years time, what scars you will bear, what you will know or have unknowed by then. I remember as a ten year old imagining what I would do as a sixteen year old: going to Old Trafford and knocking on the door and convincing the manager to give me a trial for the Manchester United. It did not occur to me that the intensity of my desire was of no consequence. Weirdly, this still seems to be a myth evoked by televison programmes like X-Factor where all the preliminary interviews to the acts centre on the intense desire of the novice performers to become stars. Nobody ever endears thenmselves to the baying audiences by communicating disinterest, by saying ‘well, it would be nice to win but if I don’t I’ll find other sources of satisfaction, it won’t be the end of the world.’ No, nobody wins hearts with that attitude. Except mine.