The Lessons along the way…

When I was growing up, my mother had this thing she would like to tell me… something that she, in turn, heard from her Grandmother.

“Wish in one hand and piss in the other, see which gets full the fastest.”

I am sure that there are many variations on this saying, and I am sure that it predates even my Grandmother.  But there is an underlying truth to the statement that I think gets lost in the humor and maybe even in the “visual” that the comment provokes.

If we take into consideration all the education we get through our lives, all the people that teach us little things, and all the books that make up our total knowledge base; I do not think it would be as important to life itself and the things we learn by doing.

Thing that we pick up through the accidents we have, the accomplishments we make, the losses we endure through our lives… those are what truly shapes and educates us.

For example, we can read about death, watch it on TV, see it in the news and hear about it on the radio, but that first time a friend or loved one dies or is killed, then it takes on a whole new meaning and we learn right then and there exactly how short and fragile life truly is.  Then, the next time you read about it, heard about it or see it in a movie or on the news, it means something a little different.

The same holds true for the rest of life as well.  Love means more when you have experienced it versus when you read about it.  Cars are fun to drive and own, but the moment you need to repair one yourself, they suddenly have a new meaning to you.

As we grow older, we see other things like this happen.  Our minds start piecing this events together with “outside” understanding of them and that, in turn, livens or gives new meaning to the experiences.

Educations is great… I encourage everyone to go as far as they can with their school studies, but do not limit yourself to just that.  Challenge everything you learn.  If your professor tells you that water is hot, go out and challenge that.  If someone tells you that Quadratics are hard, try them yourself.

The point?  Learn not only through education, but through experience.  Learn to be a thinker, a ponderer, a daydreamer, but learn also to take those thoughts and apply them to the real world.  You never know what you might find out about the world and your self.

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6 thoughts on “The Lessons along the way…”

  1. SWSamurai

    This is spot on. Too many people become lazy, mentally, and believe there is nothing more to learn, nothing more to experience, and simply forget there is more to learn.

    Now, it is hard to remember that at times. Life gets hard, things get in the way, but if the overall mentality remains in check life can be one heck of an adventure.

  2. And I think that is the key word. Adventure. People need to understand that the best things in life are the ones you are not expecting. I have never been real good at that, but as I have grown older, it has become easier.

    Maybe that whole "mellowing with age" thing actually means something.

  3. You are right, the best things ARE the experiences you didn't see coming. I have to work on that whole "mellowing with age" thing as I don't want to mellow… but it seems to be happening no matter what I want.


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