They are but beggars that can count their worth.
As I add more years of experience to my calendar I come to realize more and more how unimportant my past is. It is preverbal that gray headed ones, particularly those with no grand children, tend to dwell with memories, in an atmosphere of a life lived almost as uif that life was over. There are regrets, of course, but there is also pride of accomplishment and, maybe, satisfaction. Well and good, up to a point. But just because the hair is gray doesn't have to mean that the head is.
Sometimes, in this journal, I may bring up some event from the past to illustrate a point, and I might remember an event in conversation with someone who shared it. But otherwise I don't want to think about the past. It's gone. It doesn't exist. It is not an extant in the world.
The best part is to realize that my past, my childhood, the loss of my father, poverty, scorn, abuse, itinerancy, the education I got, the failures, the successes, the tragedies, the delights, the accidents, the injuries, the pain, the fights, the sex, the loves, the fears, do not define who I am. Put them sll together in a biography and they don't even begin to summerize me.
Woven in and out though all those threads on the loom of time are the invisible, intangible, inestimable virtues and values that have always been there and have always been who I am. Most of the events of my past were cover ups, things I did while I was waiting to discover myself or things that happened to me which beclouded the discovery.
Even if you are a young person your worth is not measured by the events of your life, including your hopes and plans. True human value is above all the tangibles and materials. I discovered this truth by going back and looking at some of the entries in my private paper journal. I was amused and annoyed to discover, in light of my recent slowly growing realization of my real value, how inconsequential many of those entries are.
Think about it. How much of your current life will you count as worth and how much will you eventually discard as worthless? I used to be amused at the answer sometimes given to interviewers of older peopled that if they had it to live over again they wouldn't chance a thing. What amused me was the bland acknowledgement that seemed to imply life was over and the belief that if they thought about it there were probably a great many things they would change. Now, today, I think about it and ask myself if there was anything I would change. My first impulse is to say that I would probably change all of it. But then I think again and say that maybe I would not, in fact, change any of it except to acknowledge to myself that none of it was true.
DB - Vagabond Journeys
Never Give Up