Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Where are you?...by Jim Terry

So who reading this had childhood goals and aspirations? And if so are you EXACTLY where you envisioned yourself to be and doing what you intended to do at this point in your life?  If you are…you really are in the minority.  As I have asked this of my friends and family most, if not all of us, are not where we expected ourselves to be from our childhood goals or dreams…As a young boy, I had a goal to “grow up” and become what I called a “fish counter" or an oceanographer. 

Those of you who knew me as a child know I always had a large fish tank in my room.  I could sit there for hours and be entertained simply by watching my fish swim around the tank. My favorite fish and the one that—amazingly—lasted for years was named Jabber Jaws. He started out as a small “common” goldfish and grew into a fish that was nearly a foot long.

Every summer we would put him out in the pond we had so he could grow and enjoy his summer’s outdoors.  I remember coming home from town one day after being at the arcade only to witness my Mother cleaning the pond that Jabber Jaws was in.  While cleaning the pond we would catch the fish we had put in there and place them in a bowl or other receptacle until the pond was cleaned and then place them back in the pond again.  This particular day my Mom was unable to catch Jabber Jaws before the cleaning and tried frantically to clean the pond before I got home so I would not notice.   

Upon my return and just before my Mom refilled the pond with water, the first question out of my mouth and directed towards my Mother was, “Where is Jabber Jaws?” 

With some hesitation and reluctance, my Mother pointed at some lava rocks that were cemented into the pond that helped create a beautiful waterfall. In the frustration of my Mother trying to catch Jabber Jaws,  he became frightened and had lodged himself between two rocks and was sitting there bug-eyed while being completely out of the water…Amazingly that dumb fish survived in lieu of being out of the water for over a half hour and being bleached during the cleaning process.

I will never forget that my Mom took me aside that day and said she felt she had “traumatized” me and could see that she had “altered” her little boy’s path.  I laugh at it now, but since I was an 8-year-old kid and that being MY FISH, it turned out to be pretty traumatic day for me wondering whether or not my fish would live or die.  

(SIDE NOTE)...I must confess and let you in on a secret. My decision in NOT becoming an oceanographer was truly changed not from this experience but when I was finally able to watch the movie Jaws!  A great white shark that is truly aggressive and attacks swimmers at night and jumps onto boats…no thanks! :)
Now I’m not trying to tell you some of these memories to bore you to death or to let you know why I didn’t become the “fish counter” but to merely point out a really great quote that I recently saw.

I believe we all have moments in our life where we question where we are at in our lives at that moment and say, “If I would have”,  “I should have” or “if I could do it all over again.”…Don’t we?   I have done this myself especially on those warm beautiful days when I am “stuck” in a dental office verses being out on a boat with the sights and sounds of the ocean.  

So in the future or the next time you wonder “where are you” in your life, maybe consider this…

There's nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be...” 
John Lennon