As we move through our lives and progress through their various stages, we sometimes forget what got us to where we were going.
As we move through our lives and progress through their various stages, we sometimes forget what got us to where we were going. We often move the training, learning, and experiences that shaped us to the back of our minds as we live in the moment and look toward the future. It is not that we don’t appreciate what we went through, but we move on.
The Nostalgia Trigger: Sending My Kids to College
In the process of sending my own kids to college, their milestones triggered my nostalgia, returning the highlights of my own journey through college to the forefront of my mind—not the reliving of my “glory days,” but the realization of how far I’ve come.
Personal Growth and Change
I think about educational experiences, life experiences, tests in classes and in life, and many other encounters, challenges, wins, and losses that I’ve experienced over the years. While it is an oversimplification to say that I am not the same person I was 5, 10, or 20 years ago, it is not an oversimplification to say that I could not have imagined the person I have become. It is not about success or failure, because those are relative terms. It is just about bearing witness to the fact that the decisions we make lead us down a path with many divergent routes, to the point where we cannot ultimately predict where we end up in life.
The Unpredictable Path of Life
Nobody can perfectly plan their journey to end at their given goal and predict all the twists and turns. Furthermore, in the end, the goal may have shifted. As I try to appreciate this process, I am reminded of the old adage, “It is the journey and not the destination.” However, when we are in the moment, we are drawn into the experience at that time; we may not appreciate what got us there and may focus too much on our final stop.
From College Kid to College Parent
As I watch my kids work their way through the early part of their college experience and see them wonder how they are going to keep up with all of the homework and tests, socialize in a new environment, take more ownership of themselves, and do their own laundry, I reflect on my own passage through that period of my life. I know that my kids will learn and grow to be able to master the challenges that they face and will look back to ponder on why they were so stressed or concerned at the time. I remember my own concerns back then and see how far I’ve come to do things that I never could have imagined, such as sending my own kids to college.