“It’s funny how your life can change/And turn around on a dime/Yeah it can take you down the darkest lane/Then lead you into better times…” – Daughtry, ‘Utopia.’
The way the world is, it’s hard to imagine how much one person can do to make a difference. Every day, we all make an impact some how. We all have the power within ourselves to do good, but we have to strive to do it. Obviously we can’t be superheroes, but we can be heroes. We’ve all got talents, strengths and weaknesses. But it’s really up to each one of us to learn and grow to make those aspects the best part of ourselves. Not just for us, but everyone you could ever affect. As a Catholic, I believe God gave all of us gifts that need to be shared.
Thursday night, I started to watch Marvel’s Daredevil on Netflix. I had heard much about it, and that I would like it, especially because the main character is Catholic. I had seen a previous retelling of Daredevil as a movie, so I wasn’t sure at first how the show would be like. Now that I’ve seen the whole first season, I have to say that this show is much better. Even with all the talk, the one thing that pushed me to start watching was that I noticed a friend of mine, Evan, on Facebook was tagged to a Catholic post that was being shared about the show. At the moment, I have been talking to him more after going to his band‘s show. This also inspired a bit of my last blog post too about taking chances.
Anyways, this show reminded me about how one person can make an impact in you’re own way with your talents. For example, Evan might not realize how much his presence, personality, kindness, and talents impacts the people he interacts with. From what I can tell his personality makes people happy. The only reason I know that is because he brings a bright smile to my face. I like to support my friends’ endeavors because I believe that’s what good friends do and because it makes them happy, which ends up making me happy. It’s a also special plus when the action inspires me in some way. I hadn’t been to the place that Evan’s band played in a long while because of a friendship I had to let go of. I’m glad I didn’t let my past stop me from going because his band is fantastic, and filled with potential. Even though going reminded me a bit of the past, it also reminded me that I can make new happy memories as long as I’m open to them. The way I’ve been feeling lately, I’m so inspired to write creatively. I keep waiting for the right story to come along, but really I just need to start.
The past shapes us, but it doesn’t define us. We make our story, with the help of God of course, and all of our stories are weaved together. We all have a chance to be happy, it’s our choices that affect that. Many things can make us happy, but at the end, it’s really up to us, as with everything with do with our lives. Obviously not every action we do will be a large wave, or even be noticeable, but being aware of it every day, being thankful for what we have, and trying our best can push us to do more. Some times we need just one person, that God brings in our lives, that inspires us to be brave. Everything else will fall into place.
“If we make the new world/Then we’ve got a story to tell/Will we stand together/Or just get torn apart/This is utopia/Let’s make a brand new start.”
Yes, some memories are precious and we need to hang on to them. but Emily Dickinson wrote ‘Forever is composed of nows’ and she’s right. If we root ourselves too deeply in the past we’ll miss what’s right in front of us.
Sometimes, so we don’t get hurt, we quickly think of all that wouldn’t work instead of taking a chance. You really never know where that chance might lead. So it’s best to be open to possibilities, take chances, and hope for the best. It simple but difficult at times. This also applies with the uncertainty of investing too much of ourselves in a project, or a relationship, that might not turn out like we hope. I find that in some instances I can be spontaneous and confident, but when I have doubt, I’m more likely to be hesitant towards what ever it may be. Those are the times when I need just a little push of reassurance.
I never ride a bike because I have a fear of falling and getting hurt. This explains a lot really. I don’t want to get hurt. I don’t want to fail. Yet some how I’m still able to drive even after car accidents. We all have a similar fear. Most of the time it’s good because it helps protect us, but most of the time it can close us off from great opportunities. Sometimes it isn’t fear at all, but an uncertainty of how people will respond. We all have our best intentions, but we let these feelings get in the way, as well as forgetting or not quite realizing what’s around us.
If I hadn’t had reassurance from family and friends, along with great feedback from professors/editors, about my essay “Mentoring in the Wizarding World: Dumbledore & His Literary Ancestors” maybe those feelings might have taken control and I may have never completed the project that soon will be published. If hadn’t closed a door to my past, and decided to go to graduate school, I might have not been inspired to write the essay in the first place. So many factors, but it’s clear that when I really want to accomplish something I can achieve it. Yet I’m unsure what lies ahead. Sure I’ve got plans to apply for PhD programs, but who knows if I get accepted. There is still stuff left I need to do before getting on that train if it arrives. I know now that I’m not afraid to get on that train, and head towards a new chapter in my life. Just as we can’t stay too much in the past, we also can’t ponder too much about the future.
I still have classes, Comps exams, and applying to PhD programs this year. I can’t lose focus, but at the same time, I need to remind myself to enjoy what I have right now. I’m always thankful to God for my life, family, friends, and everything. Yet I’m constantly reminded that I do have a habit of staying in my comfort zone. Not that it’s all bad because there are also great opportunities and happiness that lie there too, but I don’t want to miss what’s right in front of me and any opportunities that might arise or that I could create through my actions. Sometimes all it takes is making that first step is: going to a certain event (such as seeing a friend’s band), starting up a conversation, writing that first sentence, inviting people, finding something new to read/watch/listen, delving into a new relationship or maybe being completely silent and observe the world. After you make that step it makes you see the world from a new perspective, makes you realize that new happy experiences can happen in familiar places, and/or do something special. There are plenty of things that I need & want to do. Some aspects of my life that I really want to accomplish. All I can do is try to schedule, prioritize, make an initiative and work towards what is really important. Afterwards, let it be in God’s hands. Also I need to remember to not feel too guilty if I don’t get what I want done each day.
Even though I’m on break from grad school at the moment before my next class starts in July, I hope to accomplish a bit more, especially in relation to writing creatively. I must look at all the opportunities available to me continuously, and not let insecurity hold me back, so that way I don’t close a door too soon. Dr. Henry Morgan (who has a pocket-watch) made me look at my great-grandfather’s watch (shown above) in a new and special way. It’s something I’ve seen most of my life as a family heirloom, but never quite thought about what experiences my great-grandfather had with the watch and why it was of value to him. Most of all, it’s a stark reminder how we value time and the past. We want to hold the past and time in our hands because we don’t want to lose what’s most precious to us &/or get hurt, but if we hold too long and stop we may not see what happens now and the potential that lies in the future.