While in a friend's room conversing with her on the topics of Woodstock '69, our love for Michael Jackson and the city of Philadelphia....She pulled out a little book that she told me that her mother gave to her as she is on a journey on her own into womanhood and how I should really consider reading it.
The book is called "Just Who Will You Be"?
Now I am not a "book reader", I may read a magazine here or there but I mostly look at them to examine the pictures and anytime I begin to read a chapter book unless I have to for school...I rarely make it to half of chapter 1. But for some reason I just wanted to read this, to partially break the habit of not reading enough books and to just challenge my intelligence to learn somethng new....and boy, am I glad that I did.
This book, written by Maria Shriver (an offspring of the Kennedy family, wife of Arnold Schwarznegger, legendary journalist, and best selling author to say the DAMN least lol), really showed me how you can never be too old or too young to really discover what you want out of life. Maria was basically going through a midlife crisis when her nephew asked her to speak at his high school graduation. She had lost her job, which led to her losing confidence in herself, what she wanted out of life and it just left her alone....searching and wondering for what would make her life worth wild again..
Sure, she has kids, a husband and a family known for their dedication to service (I mean her mother created the Special Olympics, Uncle was one of the most beloved presidents of the U.S. and other Uncle was one of the most influential Governors of our time)...But these things had nothing to do with her acknowledging her own self-worth. She was a true workaholic and did what was expected from her mostly all of her life and she felt that it was time for a change.
So three fourths of this book is the complete speech that she made to the graduating class that she had the worst time writing and the other half is just pure reflection or the aftermath of her speech. The things that Maria said in this book that stook out to me the most were these two quotes, "fame is not a goal worthy of living your life for" and "just because someone knows your name, does not mean they know who you are". The power of those two quotes just hit me so hard.
Fame is not something that you should live for, it is something that is forced upon a person when they are known or seen as a person of greatness. According to Maria, you should live to be happy and in order to be happy you must be a postive person that does positive things..Fame is nothing more than an illusion, built by the foundation of a want of self-wroth and recognition. These things cannot be given to us by the world, they have to be experienced and learned throughout life...And there are so many people in this world whose names that we know so we assume that we know all about them, but we must remember that you have to walk in that persons shoes before you assume anything about them. Just like her, it is assumed that Maria is a happy, famous person...Full of joy because her family is famous and her husband is the governor of California.......You would never think that someone that has it "as good" as Maria would be questioning her destiny in her 50s...but names can be deceiving...You have to look at what's behind that name sometimes...
What I learned from reading this book is that there is a time in everyone's life where we must stop and think about just who will we be in the future. Not what you have been wanting to be since you were 5, not what your mama and daddy want you to be...And not what you THINK you MAY want to be.....Just what kind of person will you work towards being that can make you say at the end of the day "Damn, I am so happy and blessed with my life and what I am doing"...I think this should be a universal dream for all mankind but we all must take this road in our own due time.
Please go pick up this book, its a very small read....Under 100 pages...If you are in need of some reflecting of your life's purpose or may want to be inspired by someone elses...please read this book...It is very inspiring... God bless! P.S. Don't you just love the cover art? It may seem so simple but I just love the color blue and just seeing the balloon makes me feel like I am that balloon flowing in the sky...on my way to wherever the wind may take me... Reminds me of a song...