How A Stranger Put My Life Into Perspective
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Politics and Activism

How A Stranger Put My Life Into Perspective

Because of you, I've learned to live life the way life is supposed to be lived

How A Stranger Put My Life Into Perspective

Life is a precious gift, not matter how corny or tacky that may sound. The ability to wake up each day, and be able to breathe and function is something that is truly miraculous. What's interesting, however, is how much people focus on unfathomable achievements or the latest gossip, but tend to brush the little things away. If I'm being honest, I'm one of these people. Well, I was one of these people until a few days ago when a total stranger put my whole life into perspective.

This Saturday, I had the displeasure of seeing that a distant friend of mine posted on Facebook that their good friend passed away the day before. Naturally, as a human being, I was depressed and decided to look into his passing (I'll keep his name confidential out of respect for the family) and potentially learn more about him. Little did I know that this investigation would lead me to putting my life into a whole new perspective.

The man who passed away had recently turned 21, and he was as happy and as healthy as they come. He was not sick and there were no signs that showed he would soon pass away, making his passing that much more painful. After reading a little bit about him, I shed tears over somebody who I had never met for two main reasons: he was extremely young, well liked, and there were no signs, and also because he lived a spectacular life. I mean, this kid really had it all. Everyone who knew him loved him; he visited the UK, the Czech Republic, and other places. There was never a dull moment with him. And that's when it hit me.

I stated earlier how precious life is. No matter how depressing and cheesy it is, nothing in life is guaranteed, not even tomorrow. And the more I thought about it with tears in my eyes, the more I realized that his life was in no way a waste and his passing had meaning. Obviously, dying at the young age of 21 does not give a person the opportunity to accomplish everything they aspire to do in life, but this guy never took life for granted. Two days before his passing, he posted a photo of him out partying with friends. He lived life to the fullest, and that scared me.

His passing could have so easily been me, or somebody I love. God forbid it was me, I would have sat there and looked back on my life and said to myself: "You blew it. You had one life to live, and you absolutely blew it." And that's why I'm so emotional over this total strangers passing.

I've spent the last 17 years worrying about pointless nonsense and have been letting the little moments that I'll always remember pass me by. I've been so worried about the future I forget to focus on the right now and how precious each and every minute of every day really is. People ask me if I'm afraid of dying, and the answer is as simple as no. I'm not afraid of dying, rather afraid of dying and looking back on my life realizing it was -- ordinary.

These are the most valuable and previous days of our lives. Soon we'll be old and have to worry about taxes and house payments and marriage and all that scary adult stuff. But for right now, rejoice and celebrate these numbered days and own every second of it. I can guarantee you that you will be much happier when you're older looking back on your life laughing going, "I'm so happy that I did that" or "I can't believe that we really did that," as opposed to looking back and going, "Man, I wish I did that," or "What if we did that. What would have happened?" Take a leap of faith and own this moment. You'll never get it back.

My message to everyone is this: live in this moment. If your friend asks if you want to go get ice cream, say yes. You can do the homework when you get back. Go to the beach, go out with friends, go on a hike, learn to laugh at yourself, take ugly photos, buy the new shirt, be a class clown. Do what inspires you and do it now, because you never know if you'll have tomorrow. It's a little depressing that it took the passing of such an inspiring and beautiful young life for me to realize this, but I hope that anyone who reads this is inspired to focus not so much on the future, but rather on the right now.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the inspirational young man, his family, and all who knew and loved him so dearly. Rest easy.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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