Where were we?? Oh ya..
When I left home I was forced to start making my own decisions, I no longer was able to call my parents and ask them what is for dinner? or Can I bring my laundry over? (I know… I know… pathetic) I now had to make sure I allocated money to the right places to ensure my bills and daily needs were covered. Now, don’t let me fool you, I still had a tremendous amount of support from my family back home, but also from family that lived where I had moved. I was provided a place to live by family which was amazing, this allowed me some wiggle room to establish a good study pattern, exercise routine, and also healthy eating habits. These three basic things are what helped to set me on a path of self enlightenment.
When I lived in Reno I was was in a constant state of “fog” we will call it. I spent more time drinking and partying than I did with my family. I was so concerned about “living” that I neglected the people who gave me life and provided me with everything I had. I think a large part of this revolved around my friends I had lost, I had the “live in the moment because you never know when it may be your last” mindset, don’t get me wrong I still believe in this saying, but at the time I had been applying it all wrong. Drinking, drugs, partying were my idea of “living”, but in actuality I was making myself numb to this amazing world and all the beautiful people I had in my life. As a result of my lifestyle my relationships with my family were constantly being stretched in ways you can’t even begin to imagine. The following event will paint a picture of my former self. My family has a tradition of going out to dinner for our birthdays. Like most families the “birthday boy” always gets to decide where we dine. One year on my brothers birthday I decided to wake up and start partying, no reason really, just wanted to get drunk and have a good time with some friends (BTW, I don’t even remember who is was with). My parents had contacted me the day before and also the day of my brother’s birthday to inform me of dinner plans, they said that they would pick me up so I had no excuse not to go. Well the time came for my parents to pick me up and I avoided the call, I chose to blow off my brothers birthday dinner because I was busy. That specific event has caused me tremendous remorse, but at the same time its has supplied me with an endless amount of motivation, motivation to be a better brother, son, husband, father, friend and last but not least a better human.
(Flash forward to now…)
I don’t want you to think I regret my previous decisions because I do not, I have experienced a lot of amazing things and people from my wild and reckless days. I also don’t want you to think that I hung around bad people (friends), because I did not. I have an amazing group of friends in Reno, most of them I’ve known for over two decades. We all endured the pain from friends passing and we all coped with it in our own way. Every person in my life both past and present has had an impact and helped shape me into who I am now, but also who I want to be. Reflecting on previous experiences gives me insights to the world, and who I want to be because everyday we are faced with decisions that have real life impacts on not only our own life but everyone around us, both in the present and the future. As I have started my journey of truth I have began to evaluate various interactions with patients and families in the hospital (I work in healthcare), I have begun to see this net that encompasses everything. A decision today may not affect me now, or ever, but that same decision may cause happiness or pain to someone or something else in the future… So, how do we put ourselves in a situation where we can have a positive impact on the world and everyone in it? How do we make ourselves the best version of us so that we bring light into everyones life? How do we make the world a better place, not for us, but for our children and their children? We start inside each and everyone one of us.
“We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do.” – Mahatma Gandhi