A Child Yesterday…. A Young Man Today

A lot has happened over the last few weeks. As with anything time seems to slip away faster than I would like.

I went to my nephew’s graduation ceremony on Saturday. I can remember when I started my first job out of college. As odd as it sounds it seems like it was a lifetime ago. However, shortly after I started that job my nephew was born. He was cute right from the get-go. He was adorable and had a very warm personality. A smile was very natural on his face.  As one day turned to the next so did the weeks and months. Before long the years started passing by as if they were days. In the blink of an eye he went from being a child to a young man who is headed to college.

His life has revolved around hockey. He has breathed hockey since he was old enough to place his foot in a skate. Hockey has brought many moments of glory and happiness, which in turn brought a few experiences filled with frustration and shattered dreams. No matter how you look at it hockey has molded him into the person that he is today. It taught him the value of losing and winning. It also taught him a type of discipline that few others will ever see. Even when things weren’t going as planned he played until the final horn sounded.

As he sets off to college at the end of the summer he’ll have to bring many of these lessons with him and realize that what he learned growing up are the building blocks for his life.

We all gain knowledge in different ways. I learned discipline through diabetes and the battle that it presented every single day through my early years and into today.  If the blocks are set out in front of us it is our responsibility to build something positive with them.

I’m not worried about him succeeding in college. I do have my concerns about the initial stages of the college experience. One of the things that I’m the most proud of is the fact that I attended a college known for huge parties and I refrained from going down the wrong path. It didn’t stop me from having fun, but I also didn’t put myself in any situations that could have left and everlasting imprint on me.

It might have taken me 4 years, but I learned how to grow up more than anything. Yes, I did gain a little more education than I previously had, but the experience was more about learning to live on my own, and more simply put, to grow up.

For a long time I considered my college years the best years of my life. While I still hold them close to my heart I no longer think that they were the best. After I got out of college and set foot into the working world I was blessed with the ability to do many things that I had only dreamed about. This was all made possible by my parents. If more children had parents like mine I’m absolutely sure the world would be a better place.

In some ways that’s why I know that my nephew will be successful in whatever he chooses to do. Much of his life up to this point has been spent around my parents (his grandparents) and they have taught him many of the things that they taught me. His own mother and father have also played a huge role in his development which will only benefit him now that he is about to begin another chapter of his life.

The ceremony only lasted two hours, but I carried it with me for the next few days. When I saw all of the kids receive their diplomas it seemed like it was another lifetime that I was in their shoes.

It’s actually scary. Some people wander through their lives searching for meaning and before they know it their time is up. I’ve never searched for meaning. I’ve always tried to make my own meaning. I do the things I like and I avoid the things that bring too much frustration. Too many people search for happiness rather than doing what makes them happy.

I’m probably a little guilty of making myself a priority. I always try to take care of number one before anything else. In order to make others happy we have to be happy with who we are. I feel very fortunate that I’ve never had a problem in that area. It’s a shame when we watch people who are never happy. They always point fingers and search for happiness from people and material things. I can’t imagine living that way.

My mind is a jumbled mess tonight. I thought it was clear, but the longer I sit here it’s obvious that it’s not. My mind has had a little too much monkey chatter lately. I need quiet time to let it settle. Hopefully I can find it so0n.

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