Where Do “I” Begin?

In A Sedentary View, Columns, Features by Gregory BanksLeave a Comment

If you’re going to write a book about yourself, then the first question you must consider is where to begin?

Right now many of you are saying to yourself “Just start at the beginning, stupid!”

Well, okay, that does make sense. However, I don’t have memories of every single moment of my life to draw from, nor do I have the patience or desire to write an in-depth autobiography.

At least not today. And yet, maybe I can still technically begin at the beginning. But the question then becomes “exactly when does life truly begin?”

And no, I’m not referring to the moral dilemma concerning when a fertilized human fetus become an ensouled being who’s life must be protected. Although that also is a question I’ve thought about often.

I mean, what if the doctors had been able to tell my parents back in 1965, a few months before my birth, that I would be born with a little known disease called Osteogenesis Imperfecta, that I would suffer a childhood filled with fractures and bronchial ailments, that I would have several surgeries to straighten crooked legs, would have deformed arms and brittle, discolored teeth?

What would my parents have done faced with such unpromising prospects for their firstborn child?

What would your parents have done?

But I digress.

What I’m pondering here is that stage in your existence when you find out who you are meant to be, when your wandering feet finally strike upon the path predestined for you, that moment in your life when the light bulb goes on and you suddenly say to yourself, “Ah, I get it now!”

When does this happen? What triggers this event? How many people have given up on life far too soon?

When I began writing this piece, I had a specific answer in mind. I thought I knew the exact year and chain of events that set me on the journey toward who I am today.

But upon examining things further, realized that this was a far more subtle and time consuming process than I first acknowledged.

Just like the shaping of earth’s landscape into the form it exists today took a long, long time, the shaping of a human being takes a long time as well.

It involves a series of small and seemingly insignificant events in one’s life that each push you a little further along the path toward self-discovery.

That’s what I’ll be exploring throughout this collection of personal essays and stories.

It’s a journey of finding myself, of becoming more aware of the world around me and my own significance within it.

Because I believe, just like it was suggested in the story “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” I believe that everything and everyone has a purpose, that there is indeed a grand scheme going on in some higher beings mind.

Each of us is an integral cog in this plan, whether we ever understand the true nature of this or not.

I’ll be exploring these and other thoughts here, in this book. And you’ll get to experience the making of this book along with me, as I take another step along the path of my own self discovery.

But rest assured that, unlike other controversial memoirs in the news today, everything here will be 100% true. Unless it’s deathly boring. Then I’ll just make up something better.

Or not.

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