Are you still trying to find yourself? As I lay awake in bed, I began truly wondering about my future. Gradually as my thoughts shifted, I started to think of old age, and what I could possibly want before my death. It led me to think of a time when I was eating lunch at Arby’s before a big final exam, and saw a couple that could have been together for decades. All of these thoughts flowed through my head yielding somewhat insightful inquiries on life. Questions that I probably will never know until I’m taking my last breaths.
I am in my early 20’s, recently graduated from college, working a part time job while searching for something more fulfilling. I’m wondering where do I truly find myself in 5, 10, 20 years. Sure I have a great answer that I could use for a job interview, but deep down I know, that I might not truly know the answer. While I have plenty of goals and aspirations, I wonder, will I succeed at them? Which ones will I fail at? Which ones will bring me the biggest feeling of accomplishment? Who will be in my life 10, 20, 30 years from now? Will I have or want a family? Will I be so focused on a career that I lose sight of wanting a family? Will I still be as passionate and driven as I am now? What will I learn? What will I teach? Will I be struggling to make ends meet? As all of these thoughts flowed through my head, I found various answers, and came up with a variety of scenarios, but then I put myself in the mindset of myself at age 90 gradually withering away.
Having accepted the oncoming never-ending sleep state, what could I have wanted that would make me sleep with ease? One would be family. People who I know I may have had a major role influencing. Would I care about staying alive for the next episode of Dexter, Walking Dead, or next summer for Breaking Bad? Maybe… However I came to the conclusion, depending on how my story goes, that one thing I would really want to do is perhaps, be able to build a relationship or connection with one other person in life. Our lives are shaped by the relationships we build with people. We will have emotions good or bad as we meet and develop rapport with others. As social beings, we have a dire need for these interactions otherwise we as a species wouldn’t be as successful as we are. With that said, these thoughts about getting old and building relationships led me to remember an older couple I had seen at Arby’s.
As I sat eating, I remember wondering about this particular couples story. The man dressed in an older navy blue sweater, and the woman in a flowery dress with a green sweater on. They slowly ate their meal and I just couldn’t help but think about how nice it was that they seemed so…. content. They didn’t seem overly happy, they didn’t seem sad, they didn’t seem like grumpy elderly people, they just seemed very content and satisfied with their lives. They seemed like people with a story to be heard. They seemed like a couple that if given the opportunity, would have a lot to share with the world. A couple that has had a tremendously busy life with career changes, a family, and other interesting stories. Were they finished soul searching awaiting the big sleep? The aura they seemed to have was, for lack of a better word… “nice.” They seemed done with their careers and were just enjoying each others company. They likely had family they could call and speak with, but would likely catch them at a busy time whether the family member be at school, work, etc… regardless of wanting to call just to say something as simple as hi. These thoughts led further into another question and idea.
Would an older person want one more friend in life? Someone who wants to hear their story? A person who is truly curious about what they could share with the world? Someone who wants to bring their moments from a non-technologically driven world, into the world of WordPress, Facebook, or Twitter? If I was at their age, I think it would be incredible to have one more friend; meet one more person to bond with, to share my stories and ideas with. Someone who could make my life more relevant as I probably wouldn’t be technologically savvy enough to do anything besides maybe write an e-mail. My idea was simply to befriend the elderly and by doing so, try and share what they have to say about the world. The current generation has the opportunity to share every waking moment of their lives on Facebook. Why not try and upload stories of the past? To befriend the elderly… What greater asset can you have at such an age than one more caring friend or family member?