“The most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why” Mark Twain
Call it fate, intuition or imagination, but I have known since the age of fourteen that I was here for a reason. It happened in a stairwell between classes at middle school; a random fleeting school girl thought, but it stuck.
My friends were obsessed with boys and music and stiletto mules but I knew a different truth. I hid it of course; dismissed it even, but it was ever present like a lingering effervescence that stirred in me any calling me forward any time I attempted to settle.
It followed me to university where I attempted to drown it in gin gimlets and ancient history and for a time it subsided; only to rage forth the moment I left the place. No job would quiet it; no address or conversation or relationship would soothe it. The more I tried to find myself, the more lost I became to the point that was merely a fully employed nomad who wandered through the day in search of a long buried truth.
Time passed and I eventually fled Canada for a warmer climate, thinking that if I didn’t fit in in a cold f or bidding place, surely I would find my place in warmer climes. I was right that the weather agreed with me but it took me a very long time to reconcile the fact that I (who knew nothing) was here not to marry wisely, or make money, or win a Pulitzer.
I was here to experience life in all its forms (both the anguish and the glory) by taking on the tasks that others shy away from and seeing them through no matter how difficult; by climbing each mountain for what the journey could teach me, and to find the strength to encourage others to do the same.
The unexpected gift of this lifelong quest has been the deep awaking of an appreciation of the simplest things. For what is the point of inhabiting a world capable of creating a billion unique snowflakes if you never take the time to consider them?
The inconvenient truth of materialism is that man is not judged by the number of toys he has amassed at the end of his days – only by the wisdom of his experiences and whether he accomplished anything worth remembering. The challenge is not to be Ozimandius but to be the constant gardener whose sanctuary endures for generations.