Sunday, April 4, 2010

What Defines Us...........

I don’t know if it's the time of year or just the fact that I dwell on this subject more often than I do not but I feel that it’s a subject that goes untaught or just not discussed often enough. What I am talking about is the basic principles of living life. Now I don’t just mean living life all Willy Nilly, what I mean is living life with purpose.

You may or may not know but I have spent the last 20 years working in law enforcement and spent a lot of those years seeing people on the worst days of their life in some of the most awe full situations. And as time went by I couldn’t help but wonder how people get into these types of problems. Now don’t get me wrong some of the answers were obvious with drug use and all the crimes that stem from those types of addictions.

But I couldn’t help but dwell on what happened in their lives that led them to drug addiction or even trying illegal drugs for the first time. I didn’t fully understand it because I have never used illegal drugs and the only addiction I really have is cigarettes.

Now I am not sure if there will ever be a complete science in understanding this behavior but as I grew older and had children it became a little more apparent to me. And as I see it the whole situation is generational so to speak.

The world has become more and more impersonal and more of an “All about Me” lifestyle.
Now I used to hate it when my dad or granddad would give me one of those “When I was a kid” speeches, but I think it’s time we actually paid attention and consider the ideals that came with those little talks we had with our elders.

And I know you have all read the articles and the TV shows that talk about how technology ruined the world for the older generations but there is some truth to that in my opinion.

My generation was given the gift of home computers in the mid 1980’s and I will admit I was fascinated and awe struck and it really gave me new ways to explore the world from the country farm where I lived. Then as time progressed a little the next thing you know here is the “Mobile Phone” later know as the cell phone and wow I was living in a new age of technology. I was having visions of flying cars and computerized kitchens that made your food for you and robots doing the housework.

Well I didn’t really have a clue what the future held but little did I know how it would affect us. Now here it comes, when I was a kid we ate almost all of our meals at a strange little well known piece of furniture called a table. Ok you may not know this but a table is not a place to stack things that you want to keep nearby but its actual purpose is to sit at it, with your family, and eat your meals. This allows time for families to communicate with one another and actually share their lives with each other.

I know sarcasm rarely doesn’t work but if you know me it’s just who I am. Somewhere along the way with the introduction of the internet and smart phones and all the other forms of electronic communication we became an impersonal world. I mean stop and think about it when we were kids (my generation) we would all leave the house and go visit friends and relatives and guess what, everyone went, no one stayed at home, and that was how we communicated with our friends and family.

My brother and I was having a little discussion the other day about teaching our kids to drive and some of the difficulties they were having compared to the difficulties we had learning how to drive. That’s when it clicked it my head.

When I was a little kid I remember riding in the truck with my dad and what I remember the most was how I paid so much attention to how he drove. All the little things, how he started the truck, watching him shift gears and using the turn signals and how they turned off automatically after he had finished the turn. And when it came time for me to learn how to drive I had a head start on knowing some of the basic functions of the automobile.

My kids, surprisingly to me, didn’t know a lot of these simple things. I assumed they did but they didn’t, and I blame myself for assuming and not preparing them. My kids, and most kids today, are not paying attention to how you drive, why? Well most of them are texting or on their little phones talking to their friends and staying in constant touch with one another, and in my opinion losing out on all the little things that actual life has to offer.

Enough rambling you all get the idea, what I am trying to convey to you is that the decisions we make in life is what defines us as human beings. Now we all make mistakes in life, that’s a given, but it’s how we deal with those mistakes define who we are. If we can recover from those bad decisions or even try hard to foresee them we can try to avoid the bad outcomes. That’s where our parents and grandparents life lessons really come in handy.

I hope this message finds you all well and I would like to wish you all a Happy Easter, God Bless.