Going Out With the Past

Hey guys, long time no read. Sorry I skipped a day; I was out on a shopping spree with my aunt, my two lovely cousins and the love of my life. In an attempt to make it up to you guys I’m going to do a double feature. I will add two new posts today. And there was much rejoicing!

First off, I’d like to talk about the ‘class reunion’ I went to a couple of days ago. It wasn’t a real class reunion as much as an all out class reunion of all the graduating High School classes (starting from the 70’s throughout the 2000’s) from the ONLY High School in my town. Needless to say the place was packed. It was celebrated in a touristic area within our town, that has a dock where boats take you to different small islands nearby and the bioluminescent beach; it has kiosks where you can buy souvenirs and food and many bars (many, many bars). This grad fest is done once a year with the purpose of reuniting old friends, hating old enemies and just having fun and reminiscing.

This is the first year since I graduated, (2009) that I decided to go. The reunion turned out more like a scavenger hunt as me and my old classmates tried to find each other between the throng of people. Out of 31 we found less than 15, without counting the ones that were out of town. It was a nice evening with old friends, where we had a chance to catch up and talk about our next step in life. Between drunken slurs and loud music I was able to see how much we have grown up. I mean this not just in a physical sense (some people got REALLY fat) but in a psychological and emotional sense. However, the thing I noticed the most was this unspoken desire between all of us to compare with our peers our goals and what we have achieved.

It may seem normal, considering that we spent more than 10 years together but one must internalize the idea that we all took different paths once we graduated. It seems silly for someone who studied biology to compare their goals with someone who studied art. I don’t mean this because one is worth more than the other but because their goals, line of work, duties and mindset are different. Yet, we all compared what we had done with our friends as if we were trying to measure how much of a failure one had become or how much of a winner one was in life. And let me tell you dear reader, this is wrong.

I have a double bachelor’s in psychology and English literature. I have worked as a research assistant, a co-editor, an editor’s assistant, and even co-wrote in a book. All of these things I did because they were my passion, my desire and my drive. My friends did not have these dreams; one of them is working in a biochemistry lab with bees, the other one hasn’t found his calling in life, the other is a chemistry instructor and so on. We have all reached what we wanted (well, some of us), others need some more time to set their feet on the ground. Nevertheless, that does not make them less in the eyes of those who have reached their goal. We all have our own path, some reach it faster than others; and others take some time. The main point of life is not to race to the finish line but to build that career, that path, as you go and make that finish line when you are ready.

Reader, we are not born the same. What I see with my eyes (with or without glasses) is not what you see; and it will never be. Life is one big subjective experience. We may go to school together, share the same interests and even talk about having a life together; but we are different where it counts. My temperament, my faults, my dislikes and likes, my personality, all of it is different from yours. And this will lead us down different paths in life. Some will stop for a while, others permanently; others will race to the finish line and others will simply walk all the way there. The point is to make it in your own time, at your own pace. It’s your life and you set the bar as high as you want. Just remember, that because someone did not lead in your footsteps does not mean that they are wrong or lost; even if you have similar goals. You are not them and they are not you.

As a last point I’d like all of us to encourage others to do their own thing. Hurtful words and negative comments can cripple a person’s strength and life choices. Always offer a kind word, a positive comment and back every criticism with something positive. Reaching your dreams is not an easy thing, but it can be less of a burden when you give a hand.

Singing off,

TWS

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