We don't pick our families. We don't pick the city we are forced to grow up in. It just happens. We learn everything we can about ourselves and about people based on where we live and who surrounds us. But we never really decide how it happens.

As a two-year old we can't all the sudden talk and say I want you to put me up for adoption. Or I think living in California will be better for me instead of living in New York. We can't see our future. We can't see our limitations or even the expectations that our peers and family put upon us. We don't have a choice how we are raised. We don't even realize that it's different from anyone else's life until it's too late. Frankly I don't even know if we choose our friends. I'm starting to think that we don't even choose our jobs. We are just guided into friendships and jobs based on whats available at the time.

As we get older though we do have the power of choice. We can decide whether we stay or if we go. We have the choice to decide if we branch out and make new friends. We have the power to decide to start a new career or live in a new city. Often times I always come across people who are too afraid to make these choices to change and decide to come up with reasons why they must stay where they are. Whether it makes them unhappy or not. It's like a lot of people decide that they need the chains in their lives. They need their comfort zone and the knowledge of something they've always known. No matter how much they say they battle their lives and the struggles of growing up in such and such an environment they never really want to leave it.

I personally believe that we come across people at a certain part of our lives and they teach us something. Whether it's about ourselves or it's about society and people. I met a gay man in his 40's when I was only twenty. He was a great guy and his sexuality didn't change that at all. Now if I would have met him when I was fourteen I probably wouldn't have been as accepting of his lifestyle and would have possibly been afraid to be around him. I met him at the right time in my life. I realized he was just another struggling human being trying his best to be happy. He ended up being a very good friend to me. He cared and he listened to my problems. He helped me grow as a person more than he probably even knows.

I think we meet people like this all the time in our lives. We meet people of influence that could change our lives or how we think about things. The problem is that most people are so guarded by their circle of friends and their lifestyles that they aren't even willing to listen to different opinions. They are so consumed by the everyday lifestyles that they've always known that they fail to recognize there is more to the world. They fail to listen the outsider's perspective because they're so prone to listening to the group think of their friends and peers. There is more out there to experience and to learn from. But instead the majority of people have the same conversations with the same people until they become bored. They get tired of the same every day things that they just become depressed. Is this really that all life has to offer? No! But you choose to see it that way.

I've come across people who I find very interesting. I think they could become something extraordinary and be something that I could really admire. But I always see it in the future. I see their obstacles just like I see my own. I think if they can just get passed this part of their lives or get over those few obstacles they will get it. It will finally sink in their head their true value or their true purpose of what they should do. They will finally be happy, but only once they've let go or moved on from something. But that something is a choice. And 9 times out of 10 I see people choosing to hold on and be bothered by something. They never move on and they never reach the extraordinary. It makes me sad. I see so much potential but I know there is only so much I can do. People have to choose to change. They have to choose to let things not bother them anymore. They have to choose to want more in their lives and not settle for the mundane. Often times I'm not even around long enough for them to realize this. I've moved on.

I've been rejected, oppressed, dismissed, or any other term you want to use by so many groups because I'm the outsider. I couldn't possibly know what it's like to live here or grow up with such and such parents. Why would I know anything about grief or sadness? I'm just a rolling stone. I don't really feel anything do I? It annoys me so much that people think I can't relate to others experiences. The fact that I have moved, I have lived, and I have taken chances gives me more experiences and more life knowledge than people ever give me credit for. I just simply choose not to boast about it. There's really no point to boasting about it if no one chooses to listen after all.

Now it comes back down to another choice. Do I choose to be surrounded by people who only ever know one thing? That have only ever lived one lifestyle with one core group of friends? That will fail to ever really accept me for who I am. Even with technology the way it is I feel like I'm a dinosaur. I feel like I'm a rebel of society. Why do I want to choose to be one person in one way in one community? I have been so much more and I want to continue to be so much more. I have options. I have more to give to those that truly seek it. So I guess I'm stuck with another choice. Do I stay or do I go? Do I continue to ram my head into those who won't listen. Or do I take the chance I will meet more people similar to me? It's a choice.

Published by Brian Argetsinger