Forgotten

Posted on October 8, 2012

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Every man has a story within the book of life.  Every man wants to leave a legacy.  What follows is mine.

As a child, I remember having this magical dream where I was the strongest, smartest boy in the world.  I moved mountains and flew across oceans.  I would fight strange monsters and save people.  In all respects I was a giant among men, and everyone loved me for it.  It was always my favorite dream.  Every time I had it, I woke up smiling.

Years passed.  I was a young man now, finished with school and starting a career.  It wasn’t my job of choice, but rather a poor trade off of money over happiness.  Being an adult, I was surprised to still be having that same dream.  It had become more frequent, vivid, and started to take shape.  It became less about impossible deeds and more about doing something meaningful for the world.

Smooth and loose, time flowed easily throughout my life.  Weeks turned to months, months to years.  I got married, had children, and lived a life filled with endless creature comforts.  I settled into a routine and submitted to the life I had created.  “It’s not so bad” I thought, “I have everything a man should want”.  Still, in the back of my mind, I felt this pervasive, nagging sense that something was missing.

Every night now I kept having that same reoccurring dream.  Where in it, I amounted to more than mediocrity.  I meant something to people.  In a sea of faceless clones, I wasn’t just another cookie cutout caught in the rat race.  I was somebody.

But everyday upon waking, reality set in.  I was too busy to pursue what I wanted in life.  “I’ll start tomorrow,” I thought, and turned my back on the dream.  I settled for the path of the life that is, instead of what it ought to be.  And in the act of choosing one life for another, walked away from all that could be.

Many years later, I found myself retired and alone.  Although it had darkened and faded somewhat, I never forgot that same silly dream.  With time on my side now, I went to bed content, knowing I could finally chase my dream.

Ebbing towards consciousness, restless, I awoke from the dream.  This morning was different.  Colder.  It was the last time my dream would visit me.  In my heart, I knew my time was up.  Dejected and full of regret, I gazed into the mirror counting down the final hours of my wasted life.  My wrinkled gray face was almost unrecognizable and the light of hope had long since left my eyes.  “Where did it all go?” I wondered.  Deep down I knew I had squandered the most precious gift one can be given. Time.  I was guilty of an ignorance of the worst kind.  Complacency.  But it was too late for apologies.  My name was forgotten, and my life had just passed me by…

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