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Rated: E · Column · Emotional · #1504152
Reflection on a life
I've always said that the Internet was a tool for great good or bad. It can connect help needed and help given. It can educate and it can fool. It can communicate or miscommunicate. It can be used to control or to liberate.

But there are also some rather unexpected ways it affects those who use it.

A year or two ago, I joined a site locating lost ones. No biggie, no deep detective work kind of stuff, just a sort of "where are they now" thingie. Now, maybe it's just me, and most likely it is, but seeing where friends and co-workers have gone in their lives makes me reflect and not so happily on my own journey. Perhaps its the innate competitiveness ingrained in me from childhood. Perhaps it is just my age creeping up to tell me in no uncertain terms that life has flown by too fast. Or, perhaps it makes me face squarely lost opportunities, time, and event. And, last of all perhaps it is my own frightening loneliness in response to those who have created fullness in their relationships.

I don't know. All I know is that I look at others' lives and line them up next to my own and I see all of the people and the promise that I've let down. I see myself standing alone while all around me have made their lives full. In all my crazed ambition, somehow someway I have been left standing alone, mistaken that I had to tread this track by myself and that the sacrifices equalled the reward. I am emotionally retarded, a perpetual teenager in a world full of adults. Am I the one who stands, fists raised, refusing to grow up and finding that's what I wanted all along? It's as if the time between my early adulthood and my future agedness was a type of void, something too unimportant to notice, to worry about. There is only past and future. Somehow, the current, the now, has sped by so fast that it became and remains a blur and again I find myself alone.

Then another perspective rotates around like a picture viewed in the software of my mind, and my viewpoint changes momentarily.

I wonder if all of these people upon whom I am perpetuating online voyeurism, would look at my accomplishments and feel the same. I have done some amazing things, like meet and converse with a Beatle; like work in films on and off-screen (biggies too!), like work in the industry most people would sacrifice a limb or two to do themselves.

I've been semi-famous, semi-accomplished, semi-envied. But I've also been the one doing the envying on many ocassions.

So, who has won? Is it the person with the most, best, highest? Or is it the person who has accepted the least without thinking they've missed out? Is it even a contest at all?

Which leads me to another question: If we all connected together (and I am one of those who neglected reunions) would it be comfortable or un, as we look at ourselves and each other, internally ticking off accomplishments, wealth, looks, health?

Is it better to leave our precious memories as they are or should we murder them because we are curious about how our own lives measure up? Can we accept our lives, losses, gains with grace and peace or is that reserved for those individuals who renounce all worldy values for a greater Love?

Can I do it? Can you? And if we do, what then?

What if we don't like where our self-determined route has taken us? Will we react in the positive or negative? Will we be sparked into salvaging our time and talents to make the best of what's left? Will we be doused with disappointment, giving in to dark despair? To me, it's like sin--we never know how much we'll regret it until it's done.

Again, I don't know. What about you?
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