With all things in my life, they start with a story, a time, a place, and a situation. This story starts when I was younger. Whenever I had gotten in trouble, which I found myself a lot, my father would always push me into giving him an answer as to why I had done something against what he said and at the time, like most children my answer was “I don’t know”. This didn’t sit well with my father, he continued to prod me until I looked deep down within myself for the reason, never taking my excuses as an answer. Trust me when I say that when you get into trouble a lot, and you have to go through this process a lot, you end up good at introspection. An unlikely side effect of trying to get me to listen to the rules. Needless to say, it’s played a large part in how I operate in my life, thinking over and over as to my motivations of things.
The story doesn’t stop there when I was leaving Glendale Community College I had one of my professors call me into his office. He told me that I had a lot of potential. Then the next thing he told me was that it wasn’t a compliment. He being a huge sports fan used Kobe Bryant as an example. He told me that no one talked about Kobe’s potential because he lives up to it, and he asked me if I wanted to grow up to be known as the guy who had a lot of potential or someone who lived up to it. Needless to say, I took that to heart.
Now the reason I rehash all these memories. I realized today that I am a descendant of weavers. Not one who weaves fabric but one who weaves stories. I have been taught to weave stories through going to school, taught to create stories for myself and others. Its easy to remember the ones I have weaved for others, be them true or false. What I have spent some time doing is finding the stories I have weaved for myself with the help of others. Stories about what I can and can’t do. Stories about where I should be, and that it’s okay to only try a little. Stories about what I should accept for myself and others. Each story I have weaved has clouded my vision until all I can see is the world that I have stitched together. With this warm world, I have created, I have lost the passion for the simple things in life, becoming bored and static in this beautiful ever-changing world. I ask myself why, why am I doing this and what can I do about it.
So I reject this answer for myself, I will not simply become complacent with the reality I have weaved. I have become too comfortable with it, and part of improving is seeing the world with my own eyes instead of this quilted reality I am coated in. Stories weaved can become a blanket to keep warm in this sometimes cold world, but by no means were they meant to hold me down. I want to break the strings that I have bound myself with. Tear down these stories I have weaved because even though they may keep me in a safe and comfortable place, they also keep me stagnant. I want to learn to tilt, put my everything into what I do. I want to become the person who takes action, the seeker of answers and adventure, and someone who can live proudly for all that I do.
I know it will be hard and painful, and I will not always succeed but just like exercising I will have to go through more hardship and pain before I can improve. Blood, sweat, tears will be a plenty, but I will be able to look at myself in the mirror and say that I am living up to all I can do and weaving stories as memories instead of excuses.
I want to end with two of my favorite quotes that keep me going.
Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.
You must be the change you wish to see in the world.