I remember, a million years ago, being young and confused (so, not much different from now) - and standing near the laundry room with my Mom - and (I can't remember what led up to this conversation, but...) - asking her "Why are we here...why am I here". It's that sort of question that hits someone (especially a Mom) off-guard and I don't even know why I asked it anymore. But, I did. And the answer hasn't left me (because my Mom is awesome).
She didn't stutter and she didn't stammer - and she told me "To figure out what kind of person you WANT to be."
I don't even know if she remembers that day - but I DO. And I haven't forgotten it - because what I learned that day - that the reason we are here - is in our hands. Fate and destiny aside - what we do with what we are given is UP TO US. We have every opportunity given to us to be whatever type of person we want to become. You can help people, or you can hurt them - that is a choice. You can give, or you can take. That is your choice. You can hit, or you can comfort - it is all up to you. The world is wonderful like that - time gives you that magical split second to choose the type of person you want to be...and it keeps giving you that opportunity over and over again.
Good grief, I am nearly 40 (okay, give me a few years) - and still every day I am figuring out what type of person I am. But, I know what type of person I WANT to be - that helps in those split-seconds of making up your mind and choosing what type person you ARE. That decision - what type of person you want to BE - is never decisive (oh, the irony). It is always evolving - and it changes every day when you wake up in the morning, and you need to make those decisions all over again.
You can take what you have been given - your gifts and your talents, the little things that come naturally to you - and you can weave all of it into something wonderful to send out into the world...and you know what? All that wonderful will come back to you. You may not have money, but you have words. You may not be artistic, but you have actions. You have so very, very much more to offer than you probably give yourself credit for.
If you know how to knit and have wool - and meet someone cold - why wouldn't you knit them a sweater? I think the "becoming the type of person you want to be" comes through in what you do for others, just because you CAN.
No conversation is too small. No words you tell your children are too weak. Trust me - when you are standing near the washing machine and your child asks you some crazy question - they are listening to your answer. And, it can change their life, and the lives of the people they will meet one day. Encourage your children and challenge them, and let them know and be certain that the type of person they want to be become is up to them (and the advice their Mother's and Father's give them).
So, what type of person do I want to become?
One just like my Mother.