February 1, 2023

Everything Everywhere All At Once

It’s a question I ask myself often: what would my life look like if I had made a certain decision over another? It is, perhaps, a question that we all ask—it is not borne of regret, but of curiosity over the alternate paths of our lives.

There are the big decisions, of course, but what I find more interesting are the smaller decisions we make that we rarely think about. What if I had gone to this coffee shop instead of the other one this morning? What if made tacos instead of gyros for dinner? What if I soaked in the bath instead of taking a quick shower?

In the grand scheme of things, these decisions are probably inconsequential; not much would change if I made a different choice. But as a whole, they add up to a suite of choices that made me who I am today—a series of decisions that end up equaling a life well lived.

Everything Everywhere All At Once, aside from being an entertaining (and really strange and quirky) film, is a great jumping off point to start asking these questions about our choices. Who would I be if I had stayed, if I had gone, if I had fought, if I had cowered? What would I learn if I had access to all these answers?

It is similar, in many ways, to the message I got from the The Midnight Library: that these decisions don’t just impact the circumstances of our lives, but shape and change our character and who we are as people, too. I think, if someone told me I could go back and visit the different mes that came from different choices I made in life, I would say no. I am who I am now because of the path of my life so far, and I’m happy enough with who I am to not need to know who I could have been.

Everything Everywhere All At Once (A24)
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

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