In two weeks, I'll be at the dormitory at BYU, unpacking what few belongings I will be taking. Everything else I will leave behind, useless. It's humbling, Time. Time has ultimate control; it is the one thing we cannot fight.
Looking back on my short eighteen years of mortal existence, I wonder, "What could be different?" If I could go back and do it all over again, what would I change? Because I'm leaving, and there's no going back. There never was. But, now, that's all made painfully clear to me: that the past is written in stone, unchangeable, and forever gone. I see all my mistakes, my missed opportunities. Why was I so afraid? Why didn't I think? Fool!
I'm sorry if I seem morose, but it's how I feel right now. My family, my friends, and my youth are being left behind, for the most part. I can't go back; I can't fix the damage I've caused. Yes, I've done good. I've accomplished a lot. But, I know I could have accomplished a lot more.
Now, all I can do is look at this as a new beginning. I have so much potential, so much to live for! I can change my world, or I can break it. I've learned some very hard lessons in my childhood, lessons that I plan to protect my children from (or, perhaps, find some medium besides suffering with which to teach them). I've had experiences and trials that most people never will, and never would have suspected of me. But, I've had them, and I plan to leave them all behind.
This is the way baptism should be. We should leave it all behind: offer up the animal within us as sacrifice and burn it whole. We should be able to enter the fold of Christ completely, giving Him our burden, unconditionally. I've seen it done, but I didn't do it. I didn't understand, and I caused myself a lot of pain.
To the rising youth: Your generation will see more pain and suffering than any other. You, yourselves, will live amongst some of the most depraved this world has ever seen. Don't run away from it, don't hate it, and whatever you do, don't become a part of it! Decide in your youth to keep the commandments of God, to serve Him alone, and, I swear, you will have peace all the days of your life.
Take advantage of every passing moment, because once it passes, you will never see it again. Time is our most precious commodity, and there is no way to buy more. The clock is ticking. . .