The Journey

The Journey

A Story by Michael Raymond Robinson
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I orginally posted this a a blog, but am reposting as a "story". It is my journey of self discovery that I had taken over the past few weeks.

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The Journey

By Michael R. Robinson

 

There comes a time in everyone’s life when we sit down and think about where we are and how we got there.  We ponder our life, reading through it like a history book, examining every detail.  Laughing at those precious moments, crying at those times when life took us down those painful paths.  We scrutinize each decision and think about regrets, what ifs, and would /should haves.   Drawing that crazy curvy line up to our present, then we ask ourselves if this is where we thought we would be, or even if it’s where we wanted to be.

We ask if our life has had any meaning and purpose, or were we simply riding the waves, making poor decisions, gasping for air at each wild turn.  We think about all those we’ve met in our lives, all those that touched us deeply, and all those we touched so deeply.  We remember the joy they brought, and the joy we gave.  We cry at the pain we may have caused so many, as while as reflecting on the pain that others may have dealt.  We smile at the ones we loved, tears run down our cheeks at the ones we lost. 

We examine our choices, each so carefully, we call some regrets, and we label some as wise.  In the end, we close the book, some of us in tears, wishing it were all different, some of us with smiles, and happy with the path we have taken.  Some file the book on the shelf, with all the others they have read, satisfied, others dwell, never putting it back, rereading, wishing, desiring to go back to those precious moments where choices were made, knowing what they know now and hoping to change that outcome.

For a few of us, maybe more than a few, a chance, a single chance, is presented, by fate or the grace of God.  A moment in the here and now where we can turn back the clock so to speak, start a new, erasing the past from that one moment, re-writing the pages of history.  But alas, that cannot be.

For each page, each paragraph, down to every sentence and all the single words as defined us, made us who we are today, for better or worse.  Our lives, all of ours, are filled with choices, filled with turns, twists, and windy roads, and every step put us on a path, may it be predetermined or simply chance, but it is, in the end, how we arrived at our current destination.

Myself, I recently had that opportunity.  My life was in turmoil, I was unhappy, miserable, disappointed in the choices I have made, not all, but a handful.  I cried as I thought of all those I’ve hurt along the way, searching for something, someone.  I was at the point of giving up, excepting where I was; planning on being content with my life, settling for the fact I was not every going to achieve “happiness”.   In the long run, my life seemed it was full of bad, rash decisions, based on emotional instability, anger, and/or a need to find something, a desperate driving desire to replace that which I lost years ago.

My life felt as if it had more downs than ups.  No, it was not a bad life.  I am, after all a healthy man, it was, simply put, just not a happy life.  I was not currently at the point where I wished to be.  A dilemma that may confront us all.  There are moments in this twisted river of life that I do cherish.  I have two wonderful children, who above all, are the light in my life now.  To speak a quote from a source I do not know, but was on a bookmark with my son’s picture: “A hundred years from now, the world may be different because I was important in the life of my child.”  This simple phrase lifted my heart, gave me a smile.

As I said though, I was given a rare opportunity, a chance to unwind time.  At first, I jumped at the chance, hoping I could erase all those terrible pages, but then, in time, I realized that I couldn’t, and more importantly, I shouldn’t.  All those events, from the worst to the best defined my core being, the man who I was.  This, I cannot truly change; it is in all sense of the terms, who I am.  In fact, the key was finding the will to admit to myself, that despite the pain, the happiness, the love, the loss I have faced, the man that stood in the mirror, hidden behind a mask was indeed who I am.   This core part, this definitive whole was I.  It did not and most importantly, in my opinion, could not be altered.  Simply, the past brought me here, and no matter what pain I had or what pain I dealt, it could not be altered.  What could however, was my attitude. 

What this chance did offer, in all actuality, was the rare opportunity to go back to a place and reflect and forgive.  Forgive those who dealt me great pain, and in my opinion caused major life changing events for me.  I went back to the city I swore I would never return and remembered and forgave.  It was an emotionally challenging step, but worth every moment.  Did everything turn out the way I hoped with this once in a life time event?  No.  Does this disappoint me, yet even hurt, sure it does.  But now, I have a chance to start over.  There is hope, there are dreams, and there is friendship and family.

Now, I close the book on my past, bookmarking events to return to occasionally to reflect, not dwell, but to remind me, to learn from.  Can I change those events some twenty-six years ago?  Can I change the decisions and actions I made a mere few weeks ago?  No.  But now, I can mark them with a folded corner on the page and move onward.  I can now bury those regrets, shred off the pain and move on.

We can never change what was done, nor can we change the core of which we are, as defined by life, but we can alter our attitude toward the present and the future.  For the past is written, now shelved, the future is yet a clean slate, a fresh start.  We can have new dreams, hopes, desires, and goals, not defined by events, but scripted by our attitude.  I once said to someone years ago, a phrase I long forgotten, that our life is only as good as our attitude.  I believed that once and now I believe it again.

We are never too old to start anew; never too old to wash away the tears and pain of the past.  We should never forget our dreams, our hopes.  We should stand in front of the mirror and look at ourselves and remember, we are who we are, we’ve made mistakes along the way, but in the end, I am I.  I can change my attitude, I can change my thinking, yet I cannot change what defined me or that “core” of who I am.  This we must simply accept and strive to only do better in our life and to those we love and the world around us.  Happiness starts within, not around us.

I have learned now to place priorities in my life, starting with God, myself, my children, and those whom I truly care about with all my heart.  My family, and my friends, all of which I owe a hefty thanks for listening, and being there as I struggled along this path.  I sit here now, reflecting, tears swell in my eyes, which I am not afraid to admit.  Yet my future looks brighter and brings a smile to my heart and soul.

In my travels around the world, I have found many I call friends, and a few I love with all my heart, none of which I will ever forget, both good times and bad times.  A few have my heart, always and forever, I give it freely, with no regrets, no expectations.  There was a time it was all about me.  I needed to fill a void in my life, a hole that was torn years past, but that is no longer.  My love to God, my children, to that special someone, and my family is unconditional.  No strings attached.  You all were there for me and now it is my turn to be there you, always and forever.  My compassion for those I call friends and who grace me with my friendship flows even deeper.  I will be there for all of you when they want a shoulder to cry on, a boost of encouragement, or the honest truth.

I can say my core has not changed from my recent reflections.  After many teary days and nights, my behavior and attitude, however, have.  In the past few months and more so in the past week or so, I’ve grown a tad bit wiser, a great deal happier, far more confident, and a deeper understanding of who I truly am.

Remember always, we should close that book, place it on the shelf.  We must forgive, yet not forget.  We can reflect, but not dwell.  We can look ahead, and fear not the future, but be eager to take that step, that leap of faith on to unfamiliar paths that the future may hold.  We must trust in God, know that he guides us, we should to listen.

We should realize that we cannot dwell on the darkness in the past, or hide in the shadows of the present, if so; we truly cannot see the light of the future.

“Life is only as good as your attitude!” 

With Peace and Love to all, I thank all that have touched me in my life, all that have been there and will be yet in the future.

Mike Robinson

© 2010 Michael Raymond Robinson


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Your thoughts and views on this subject are very similar to my own. Through no fault of mine, things weren't too good for me when I was growing up, so as I became an adult and plodded forth into the world, I never expected much and didn't set my sights very high. Looking back, I know I could've done much better, but we can't change the past, so I accept what was and endeavor to live up to my potential today and every day I'm allowed to remain on this planet. I didn't mean to talk about myself so much in replying to your story, but to make comparisons.

Posted 9 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

Your thoughts and views on this subject are very similar to my own. Through no fault of mine, things weren't too good for me when I was growing up, so as I became an adult and plodded forth into the world, I never expected much and didn't set my sights very high. Looking back, I know I could've done much better, but we can't change the past, so I accept what was and endeavor to live up to my potential today and every day I'm allowed to remain on this planet. I didn't mean to talk about myself so much in replying to your story, but to make comparisons.

Posted 9 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on July 2, 2010
Last Updated on July 2, 2010

Author

Michael Raymond Robinson
Michael Raymond Robinson

Robinson, PA



About
I'm returning to the Cafe. I look forward to reading and talking with ya'll within these cyberwalls. I am a lover of fantasy, science fiction, and supernatural thrillers. I was influenced at a yo.. more..

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