A few weeks back, I woke up late, and so didn’t even bother to get ready or put on makeup before I went to work at the campus omelet kitchen.. What’s the point when the job makes me look like I’ve been working in the omelet kitchens of Hades, regardless of how I beautify beforehand? I’ve noticed, though, that when I don’t have makeup on my eccentricity is upped several thousand notches. I have no makeup, so I have no appearances to keep up, and bouncing off the walls seems in order.

Oddly enough, the only times in my life that boys have asked for my number is when I’m wearing no make-up and usually looking a little like a drowned rat. Maybe that underneath personality isn’t half bad.

Anyway, so my mood was high, and I was giggling with my omelet partner, and as I was serving I said, “Yea, I have a strict policy against making friends across the counter,” and then I looked up as I served the omelet in my hand, and there stood this beautiful man. He looked me in the eye and then said, “It’s a pity you don’t make friends across the counter,” and turned and walked away leaving me speechless. It was one of those moments where you don’t fully comprehend what someone says until they walk away, but even if I had heard what he said in a more timely fashion, I probably couldn’t have come up with the perfectly quippy, flirtatious thing to say back until about 6-8 hours later.

Recently, occasion permitted me to make a playlist of my life for a new friend’s birthday. It was a request from him as a way to get to know me better. It was an interesting exercise for me as I listened to the CD trying to decipher what he might conclude about me from hearing the songs, and I found that my insistence on mourning for missed opportunities was one of the most prominent themes in the playlist of my life.

I fanaticized that that across-the-counter friend of mine would come back another day, but he never did. It wasn’t a big deal to me, and yet permeating my life’s playlist are lyrics like; “time as I’ve known it, doesn’t take much time to pass by me” and “there are times that walk from you like some passing afternoon” and even “hear the sigh of the tree, the tree sighs for its growing.”

I know on paper all about how every ending is a new beginning and when one door closes… But in real life, as this semester has come to a close, I question; why didn’t I delve deeper on my acting track monologues before performing them? Why didn’t I start on all the papers I had to write for the end weeks earlier so I had time to make them excellent rather than sub-par? And why the heck did I wait until the last two weeks of the semester to find out how incredible the pre-missionaries in my life are?

Now all I have are huge queries as to how I’ll ever make it into the acting program, an only ok grade in a class I could have absolutely owned, and two years to stew about how best to go about reconnecting with those pre-missionaries once they become post-missionaries.

I have truly been self-educated in the school of nagging regrets and now, before me, looms four months in the Holy Land at the BYU Jerusalem Center(I leave on Tuesday). Every person I talk to says that it is the most life-changing and soul-soaking and mind-boggling experience that I will ever have and I’m praying every preparatory minute that I don’t just let it rush by and wake up when we’re flying home wondering why I didn’t do and see and feel more.

I’m trying to decide now to consciously soak in every moment. I don’t want one grain of sand in this four-month hourglass to become just another rough spot on the sandpaper of regret that I know I will just use to upset my happiness and downplay my successes later. But, like so many other times in my life, I’m left desperately searching for a way to make that abstract concept that I can express on paper into a palpable and applicable reality.