After these past 4 years, I have to ask myself: “How much did I really change?”
It has just become the new year of 2018 and like every other year, an evaluation has to be made about the current status of my life. I have to evaluate who it is I am, and how far I am to who I want to be. As I’ve probably said before, I believe change is one of the scariest things that can happen to man, but it’s also one of the things that helps us grow.
Recently I’ve been seeing a trend in a lot of shows who have characters that go through drastic self-initiated changes, in a desperate attempt to aim for the person they want to be. In all of these shows a common theme is emphasized: What traits did they have to lose to get what they wanted in the end?
These stories are usually about characters chasing power that will allow them to protect themselves and their friends from harm. Every time these characters chase for more out of life, there always seems to be an unexpected consequence to their actions. Although most shows don’t explicitly show this as a bad thing all the time, I see it as somewhat melancholic. The saddest part of it all being that the character sometimes doesn’t even realize that they lost something they thought was important.
Perhaps it’s for the best the characters focus on what they’ve gained, as the realization of what was lost can be catastrophic. Let’s take a show like Breaking Bad. We have a somewhat weak character like Walter White who was constantly taken for granted by his friends and family, and turned into a cold-hearted , take no prisoners drug lord by the end of the series.
Mr.White, who was commonly the butt of all jokes, was seen as the predictable Chemistry teacher with a lot of missed opportunities for greatness. He was seemingly a man who was content with who he was. What was surprising was that those around him regarded him highly for these traits.
With his predictable behavior he was seen as a responsible husband and father, and with his contention for life he was seen as a man focused on his family. For these reasons he was seen as a stable foundation for the family and loved dearly by everyone around him (although not obviously shown at first).
When diagnosed with cancer, reality hit him in the face, and he was forced to confront his reality — that he would die not quite living the life he wanted. So he set out to do exciting things in Chemistry, finding a lab partner to help him ride out the new rapid tides of life.
From this, he ended up having to give up his family, friends, and ultimately his life to becoming something bigger than he could’ve ever dreamed — a drug lord. But after getting there, he looked at the trail he left in his wake, and began to reflect on all that he could’ve been had he not chosen this route.
I want to make a lot of changes this year but I’m still thinking, “How much am I willing to lose to get there?”