“I saw my earlier selves as different people, acquaintances I had outgrown. I wondered how I could ever have been some of them."
-- Roger Zelazny, "The Chronicles of Amber"
We’ve all heard someone say “Version 2.0” to mean “New and Improved”. Sometimes it's about software; sometimes it's about a product “As Seen on TV”; but we've also heard it said about people, like “Jacki 2.0”.
In software, “version x.y.z” represents “[major].[minor].[patch]” (respectively). “Patches” are bug fixes or style changes almost indistinguishable to from the previous version. “Minor” versions include additional features or design improvements. But “Major” updates are reserved for breaking changes, incompatibilities, and redesigns -- things which are worth the effort to upgrade to, and from which you can not easily go back to the way things were before.
Which is why it's so interesting when we use the “2.0” to refer to versions of people. What does it mean to have “breaking changes” or “incompatibilities” with our previous selves?
What comes to mind for me are beliefs, relationships, careers, and locations. They're often transformations which might take place over months, years, or even decades. But at some point, we look back and realize just how different we've become from the people we were previously.
Just how incompatible.
Today, I “randomly” passed by the street dog in this photo, who is the spitting image of Clavo, the street dog I brought back from Perú eight years ago.
This past weekend, I “randomly” met up with a friend and video chatted with another, both of whom are from that same time in Perú eight years ago.
The other night, I "randomly" found a restaurant here in Guatemala which serves beers from the brewery nearest my apartment in NYC eight years ago, right before I went to Perú.
I mean, I know life's an upward spiral and all, but damn! That's a lot of significant re-memories packed into a single week!
It got me thinking:
What version am I on now?
In what ways am I a better version of myself?
In what ways am I the same? (or, dare I ask, worse?)
Which versions of myself have I outgrown?
Which versions can I hardly believe I ever was?
Which versions will I yet still become?
❤️ Conroy v18.9.3
Conroy, I love how you think and write. This was so timely and gives me pause as I am transforming my life post my mother’s death and the end of 12 years of family caregiving. Time for me to do some writing, I think.
~ Eyvette ?.?.? (Not sur what version I am now, but I’m excited to figure it out!) 💕
love this. great to see you writing again, my friend!