What we tend to perceive as the most important days of our lives are days of showy and extravagant occasions. These can be very exciting, significant and memorable days, but they’re typically not the days that truly hold the most meaning for us. Here are some examples of what we think the most important days of our life are versus what they really are:
1. Your first words/When you find your voice
Although you can’t remember the day you spoke your first words, your parents have likely hyped it up to you as one of the most important days of your life. Far more significant than the time you uttered the word “dada,” however, is the day you find the courage to speak up for what you believe in. Not much is more fulfilling than taking a stance and arguing for something that is important to you. It is the first time that you find the courage to do this that will begin to build and shape your character and help form who you will be as a person for the remainder of your lifetime.
2. Your 18th birthday/The day you’re able to begin to repay your parents or caregivers for all they’ve done for you
While our 18th birthday is the day we legally become adults, most 18-year-olds are dependent upon their parents both financially and emotionally. This is nothing at all to be ashamed of, for 18 still is quite a young age. You may technically be able to call yourself an adult on the day that you turn 18; however, a far more impactful day is the day that you’re finally able to start giving back to your parents/caregivers. I assure you that being able to give your parents large and meaningful gifts in your adulthood will be far more rewarding than the day you turned 18.
3. The day you graduate from college/The day you find your true passion
Commencement day is a momentous occasion. It’s a day to celebrate all of the effort you’ve put into your studies for several years of your early life. It’s extremely fulfilling to realize that all of your hard work, late nights and dedication finally have paid off. However, the day that you realize it was all worth it is not likely to be your graduation day. It might have happened before the day of your graduation, or it might still be lurking in the future, only to come after several more successes and failures and attempts at jobs that turn out to be simply the wrong fit for you. The day you realize what you were put on this earth to accomplish is far more important than the day you receive your college degree. Even though it may not be a day of celebration with family and friends, it will be more satisfying by tenfold.
4. Your wedding day/The day you realize you’ve met the love of your life
For many people, their wedding day is one of the worst days of their life — everything goes wrong, someone’s dress is a sliver too tight and heels were a little too high, someone’s tux loses a button and feet lose blood flow from their barely broken-in shoes, and nobody knows how to dance properly to the songs the DJ is playing. Weddings are beautiful ceremonies that can be filled with tears and laughter, but one’s wedding day doesn’t come close to the importance of the day the happy lovers realize that they have found the person they want to spend the rest of their life with. This can happen any time in a relationship; it doesn’t have to be the day an individual proposes or is proposed to.
5. The day you met your best friend/The night you stayed up with them laughing and talking about life
In some cases, these two incidences may be synonymous. However, in general, the day you met the person that is closest to you today was nothing particularly special. There were no fireworks. No cartoonish arrows formed out of thin air and pointed at them to tell you that they would become your long awaited best friend. What is really special is the day that turned into night without you ever noticing because you were so engaged with this person who seemed to relate to you on such an intimate level. It’s the memory of that first night filled with laughter and bonding that will sear itself into your memory for a lifetime.