As a teenager, I feel little pull on the greater world. This is my time to grow and be shaped by others. I leave my mark in little ways: distorting drying cement with my handprint, leaving a picture in a book at the library, and writing my name on a rest-stop picnic table in the middle of nowhere. The satisfaction for such a little act, a forbidden act, is enormous. I know that one day someone will place their hand in my impression, open that book, or notice my name while eating lunch, and experience an automatic connection to me, as part of me, my creation, impedes their thoughts.
I believe we all live for the ultimate quest of ubiquity. I am not saying that I am striving to become God, or anything that wields such an inexplicable amount of power. I simply want to be remembered. I want my image to continue to exist once I no longer can. I want to have the power to resonate so strongly on a person’s life that they remember me in the future, when he is a lifelong friend, a one-time acquaintance, or someone merely trudging the same path. I want to be global.
As I grow older, my box of reference will expand and I will be able to create a lasting, more significant impact wherever I go. I long for the day when my efforts reach outside of the immediate space, outside of my neighborhood. For now, I do my best to create unfaltering bonds with friends, reliability with teachers, and availability to my parents. These may seem like such a minor attempts, but I know that these people will never forget me.
Growing up, my mother always said, “Find something you love to do and do it well. If you do, nothing can stop you.” This means more than just choosing a career that isn’t colorless or depressing. It alludes to becoming the leader of a revolution, changing the world through one’s work. I’m going to find my niche and become revolutionary. I will dive into the deep because it takes a dramatic act to make an impressionable change.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.