Years ago, when I was a child, all I wanted to do was go to "California" and be a star.
I grew up in a lower-middle class family, with no money. All I had was a beautiful, loving family, immediate and hugely extended.
My Mother and Father, God bless them in Heaven, each had eleven brothers and sisters. And our house was "the" house - not only...for family but for everyone in the neighborhood.
As I grew into my teens and later my early twenties, all I wanted was, again, to leave Rochester (NY, my hometown) and go to LA. I used to say to myself, "Ugh...there's just so many people around. Let me out of here. I just wish all I had was me."
Well, years later, after I went to LA, and found my measure of success, and then returned to Rochester to care for my parents in their elderly years, everyone was gone.
No more aunts, no more uncles, no cousins, no more nightly visits. I had my measure of sucess...not the stardom...but a portion of it. And I would have given anything to have my massive family back...certainly, my Mom and Dad...who left me nothing when they died...because they had nothing...at least nothing of what this world calls secure. And yet, of course, I did not care for them to gain anything. I cared for them because I loved them. And feeling their love in return was enough for me...especially as I grew to appreciate the family that was long gone over these last few years.
And today, as I hold residence now in LA as well as Florida, my dreams are in line, my heart is softer and kinder, and I wait to create a family of my own...even at 49...knowing that the knowledge I have gained through loss...and love...conquers daily the big purchases and the big parties.
And the great friends I have retained over the years...merely having coffee with them and/or good conversation, has come to mean so much more to me. All of it combined has allowed me the grand opportunity to understand that we are "here" in this world...not so much to reach our goals...but to reach out to each other in the process of seeking our goals...to reach out to each other with nothing less than joy, peace and loving kindness.
Should we write our scripts, star in our TV shows, teach our classes, operate in our surgeries, develop our ideas, etc., in the process, then we are all the better for it. But we are still all the BEST for it should none of those things ever transpire.
If so, we will still have the "time" we have spent with one another...as we "live" the scripts of life.