For the past few years, I've enjoyed an ability to go back in time.
No, I don't physically go back to a year of my past, but it's essentially time travel. With the new year now underway, however, I'm starting to wonder if this ability to dwell on part of my past is actually preventing me from part of the future.
Let me explain: for my 17th birthday, I received Sirius satellite radio in my car. Out of obscure curiosity, I decided to listen to the channel that streamed BBC Radio 1. Yes, that's the kind of teenager I was.
As a result, I discovered the Chris Moyles Breakfast Show and immediately fell in love. They were there every morning on the drive to school, chatting about daily life, pop culture, and always laughing. You couldn't help but smile.
For the next four or five years, that was my morning. It stayed with me when I went off to college, and if I didn't have early classes, the show was there to make my morning lie-in perfect.
In 2011, Sirius dropped Radio 1 from its stations, but that didn't stop me. Fortunately the BBC records all of its shows and lets you play them back anytime of the day or week. My mornings were still intact.
Then, in 2012, tragedy struck. That summer, host Chris Moyles and his team revealed the show would be replaced. They had been on the air for eight years, so it was naturally going to end. But I still remember that last morning in September when they signed off for the last time.
It was like losing family, which I know sounds weird but think about it. They were there with me every morning as I laid out what I needed to do that day. Waking up became drastically different.
Then I found a website that has all of the shows (minus the music for licensing reasons) recorded and available. They're organized by date, and I can choose any of those five years' worth of episodes that I listened to, or some that I missed, to play in the morning wherever I am.
It was a bit like having a family dog suddenly come back to life.
But, that's not how life is supposed to go, is it? The fact of the matter is, we all go through good times and then bad, discovery and loss. Sure, we cherish memories, and maybe we even wish really hard that we can just go back to this or that moment if only for a second.
It can't happen, though; the time is passed and we have to move on. But I've found a way to keep this part of the past with me.
I don't know if that's good. What if dwelling on that part of my life is keeping me from discovering a new, perhaps even better, way to wake up in the morning? Sure, it's just a radio show, but the same principles remain.
For now, I'll keep enjoying this gateway into the past (last week I started the 2008 year of the show, which is back in my high school days.) It makes me happy, and isn't that all that matters?