One of the greatest battles you can inflict on a group of philosophers is the idea of what is more important: the journey or the destination.
Here’s my thoughts on the matter, preceded by tons of personal examples.
I haven’t written much lately. I’ve been a bit ‘distracted,’ and I purposefully use that word because I know from teaching as long as I have and being in school as long as I have, it’s not really a desired trait in terms of success. I have to think this is ironically funny in many aspects, because we push for success, and job descriptions now more than ever demand someone be good at ‘multi-tasking,’ but the truth is really that it is hard to be ‘successful’ as well as a ‘multi-tasker.’
I’ve come to see the multi-tasking aspects of my life as the eroding of the other parts of my life, largely when it comes to the bigger picture and the step-by-step process.
Please understand me a bit here: I am very efficient, and competitive, and I weigh things carefully out in my mind before I choose to select them. That’s part of the reason I know you have to plan ahead if you want something done faster, and you have to ‘forefront’ a lot of projects with careful time and planning. It really takes experience to know how closely things are going to turn out the way you want them to. Intuition is something that can be honed with logic and emotion, in my opinion.
But there is just no way to plan for certain things.
Like kids. I always wanted to be a mom. But I didn’t realize how attached I would be to my kids and my family. I love the time I get to spend with them and I don’t want to miss out on a lot of it.
Like education. I always wanted to get a least a master’s degree. And I got it.
Like depression. Whether prepartum, postpartum, or brought on by life circumstances, depression can sneak up on you, even if you are pretty content with the way your life is going. I’ve learned that.
Like unexciting expenses, such as needing a new smoke alarm and CO3 detector (I didn’t even know you really needed that one).
And there are a bunch of little things, such as ‘needing’ to change your bathroom’s wall colors for no real reason, other than you just want a ‘Blue Lagoon’ bathroom instead of the ‘Sea-Green Moss’ one you have.
My point is here is I want to be a writer. A great one. One that’s not shuffled past in the long line of authors I’m sure my generation, and the other generations before and after me, will create. I am not sure I will get there, despite my hopes on the matter. And I am not sure I can all the time, because as much as I toot myself as SuperMom, I can’t really do it all, all of the time (just most of the time).
If I had to akin it to something, I would say it’s like packing for a trip while on the trip. You collect shells from the beach, take pictures in the mountains, and try not to pee yourself sky-diving. You pick up each thing for its wonder, it’s pull, and you thank God for it, but you need to put it in your bag and let it sit there, to see if it can pass time’s test of whether or not it holds a deeper, more lasting meaning.
So the journey and the destination go together. They both lean meaning and purpose to life. Is one more important than the other? You can’t really have the big without the little, and you can’t really have the it all the ‘important’ things if you don’t put some care into some of the more ‘unimportant’ details. You can’t have one stand of DNA without the other. Without the other, there is no humanity left.
Technically, that’s some bacteria DNA is set up, but that’s not going to be enough for us.