Do I Mean Something to the World?
“I have learned that you can go anywhere you want to go and do anything you want to do and buy all the things that you want to buy and meet all the people that you want to meet and learn all the things that you desire to learn and if you do all these things but are not madly in love: you have still not begun to live.”
-C. JoyBell C.
I mean something to the world.This sentence is what we all long to say one day. It is the thing we search and long for in our lives. We go looking for this sentence in colleges, our jobs, our families, our travels. We always are wanting to know whether or not we will even matter 20 years from our death. We try, even in our passing, to be remembered, to be known.
“You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.”-Albert Camus
I was thinking about this concept last night when a friend was trying to figure out what she will do in her future. Should she stay in this major? Should she switch? Should we all just become homeless people in California?( I personally would like that.) So after a conversation, tears, and just a time out from life, we were able to at least calm her down and help her realize that it was going to be ok. But then that statement popped into my head, I mean something to the world.
Here is my dream; it may sound silly or ridiculous to some, but here it goes: I want to live in San Francisco, Chicago, or New York. Really, as long as it’s a big city, I’ll be fine. Although, I like San Fran because its warmer. I want to work in the writing world. What facet of that world? I don’t know. I would really like to work in publishing, teaching, public relations, maybe marketing, or some other job I’ve probably yet to discover. I want to write a book. Quite honestly, I would like to make enough money from that to where that’s all I did, but I have to be a little realistic.
“Because children grow up, we think a child’s purpose is to grow up. But a child’s purpose is to be a child. Nature doesn’t disdain what lives only for a day. It pours the whole of itself into the each moment. We don’t value the lily less for not being made of flint and built to last. Life’s bounty is in its flow, later is too late. Where is the song when it’s been sung? The dance when it’s been danced? It’s only we humans who want to own the future, too. We persuade ourselves that the universe is modestly employed in unfolding our destination. We note the haphazard chaos of history by the day, by the hour, but there is something wrong with the picture. Where is the unity, the meaning, of nature’s highest creation? Surely those millions of little streams of accident and wilfulness have their correction in the vast underground river which, without a doubt, is carrying us to the place where we’re expected! But there is no such place, that’s why it’s called utopia. The death of a child has no more meaning than the death of armies, of nations. Was the child happy while he lived? That is a proper question, the only question. If we can’t arrange our own happiness, it’s a conceit beyond vulgarity to arrange the happiness of those who come after us.”-Tom Stoppard, The Coast of Utopia
I was asked last week by a family member why I liked English, why I liked writing, why I wanted to create novels. I couldn’t answer them until after my conversation last night with my friend. I realized that, for me at least, writing is how I am searching to mean something, to be remembered, to have an influence on others lives. For me, it is how I am happy. My career will be a major portion of my adult life. I have to be happy with what I am doing. I have to accept I am who I am. I like what I like, and that I will mean something to world even if it’s not in the capacity I originally thought.