And that's okay.
In this second, in this moment, you are here. Your choices are what have led you to this moment, to this way of thinking, this geographical location, this size, this mindset, this career, this family. You have chosen this, it wasn't thrust upon you or signed in a contract with your own blood - probably. If you're like me, you've chosen this.
So stop looking at others' choices and wondering if you're doing something wrong.
Maybe you are, maybe you aren't, but that has nothing to do with where anyone else is.
You are you. You are distinct from every other form of matter that has ever existed. You are something so unique that no science or magic can replicate your being in its entirety. Comparison to anything or anyone else just doesn't make sense.
If you don't like where you are, change it.
If you like where you are, make it better.
If you are like me, and you constantly squirm around wondering if you are measuring up or if you've missed the boat to some ambiguous deadline (a deadline that almost always leads to consumerism, debt, stress, etc), if you're like me and you don't daydream, you wallow in what-could-be-or-should-have-been, if you roll around in the mud until you're practically suffocating, choking on the question,
"Where should I be?"
So many people so much wiser than me, say to keep looking forward. I disagree. I say, glance forward often enough not to veer off the road, but for heaven's sake, look around you. And be grateful. And don't just look, absorb.
It can nearly drive you crazy to think of the seconds ticking away that you can never, ever get back. There, see? That second is gone now.
"I wish I would have smelled the tulips in my yard last year. Maybe I will next year."
No. Smell them now. Bathrobe on? No? Go grab it, don't worry about the shoes. Dew is good for the sole ;).
Is there somewhere you want to be? Somewhere you need to be? Not just for you, but for those around you?
Of course there is.
Get there. Get there the right way. No cutting corners, no skipping ahead three spaces. Do the work, do the planning, do the hardest part: be okay with where you are each day as you "get there". Sit back and say to yourself, "I'm here today. I'm okay with me today. I'm doing my best today."
One day, I think, we'll all wish we'd done that a little more.