The other day I went through some of my pictures from last year and one stood out. Not that it was such an incredible perfect picture, no pretty much the exact opposite. In that picture I am standing with my mother and holding Nathan at my grandparents grave in Finland. This alone wouldn’t make it so special but I remembered a picture from one of my parents photo albums where my dad is holding me as a baby at the same grave.
These pictures just show too well how time is passing by. In one picture I am myself the baby being held by his father and in the other I am myself already a father holding his child. How easy it is to forget that time is a cruel thing pushing ever forward. When I was a teenager I couldn’t wait to turn 18 and finally drive a car (yes, in Europe it is normal that you get your licence with 18, sometimes with 17). This is now over ten years ago and I still remember those darn driving lessons, not to speak of all the school annoyance back then. I would have never imagined that I would be married few years later and have a child. The whole future I imagined for myself didn’t really turn out that way, but this is just life you never know what will happen next.
As a child I imagined all kinds of scenarios for my future, many involved being some Olympic Champion. Guess I didn’t foresee too well that the body can’t always keep up if not maintained well enough…anyways in none of my dreams I saw myself married with 25 and having a child short time later. I didn’t see myself ever moving to Finland or even moving then back to Germany right into the same building where I grew up. China? China was just a distant scary country with strange people. Things always tend to turn out rather different it seems. Most of all I never ever imagined having such a strange mother-in-law! Just kidding, she could be much worse.
Enough of my dreams as a child and back to those two pictures. This grave of my grandparents is somewhat special. I never met any of them. My grandmother passed away decades before I was even planned and my grandfather suddenly died just few months before my birth. He did not even know I was on the way as my mother wanted to surprise him. My mother still tells me that she saw him in her dreams the night before I was born and that I have similar behavioral traits as him. My grandparents never met me yet there are two pictures at their grave which are important to me; in one as a baby in my father arms and in the second as a father holding his son.
There are always unforseen events in life and you just got to hope for the best. Like my grandfather, out of nowhere he was suddenly one day dead without knowing anything about me. There is nothing like planning your life exactly ahead. My life also went differently than hoped or planned, very differently the past half year. My health hasn’t been exactly the best since this Spring. It hasn’t been good at all. The trip to China I had been looking forward to for so long did happen but in a very different way as planned as I only spent few days there to take care of important business and then fly back to Germany for health reasons. Over the past months I had heard many times from doctors that things are looking well just to drop into another hole few weeks later. I don’t know when things will turn out well for me, so I just go on and try to enjoy each day as much as possible. So I must also excuse myself a bit here as I try to keep up with this blog as much as possible but every now and then there might be again some longer “away” time for me.
What where your dreams as a child, how different are they to your life as an adult?
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39 thoughts on “Remembering The Past and Dreams for the Future”
Until now, I haven’t had any major U-turns in my life from my childhood expectations.. Probably the part about moving to Poland, working here AND speaking such a difficult language has been the most unexpected one. I remember being 19 and thinking like being 23 sounded so far away, but I am going to turn 23 soon in a few months..Time does fly by so, so fast, and that’s why it’s so important to enjoy and appreciate the little things and make the best out of it.
I hope you’ll recover quickly and that you’ll be completely healthy again. Best wishes!
Really, no major u-turns in life? Wow I envy you as too much in life has been like a rollercoaster thus far.
Learning new languages is always troubles, especially when they have nothing in common with the languages you learned thus far.
When I was 18./19/20 years appears to pass by so slowly, always something new to discover and learn but after I turned 22 it somehow became normal and after I got together withmy wife the years just seem to flash by. Can’t really believe that I am already 28!
Aw, dude! You’re making me sniffle. Thank goodness I am not in public today.
I didn’t imagine I would manage to get such reaction to this post. I was writing it all down within 20minutes or so after seeing the picture on my computer and searching for the old one on the albums. All I can say for myself is thati am happy to be still alive, remembering all my close dead relatives makes me cringe, especially after searching for this one picture and seeing all the old ones when they were still alive.
I guess everyone is the same, if you ask anyone if they are what they planned to be 10 years ago, all the answers would be No. Our plans and actual life will always change based on what we experience. Just have to learn to accept and go with the flow 🙂 .
I actually met some people who achieved everything they dreamed of as a child. Sure, they are just a few peeps but still it is kind of awesome 🙂
Sorry to hear you’ve been sick, Crazy. I hope you get well soon and fly out of all of those holes. Ten years ago, I wanted to work in the media and be a career woman earning a lot of money. Now, the media career is distant and am struggling to get by going from job to job. But this life has thought me the importance of being humble and working hard to get anywhere. I also didn’t think I will still be in Australia after I finished studying some years ago.
It seems that especially with careers that there are many pitfalls in life. In my case I never had any real career plans as I was just going with whatever suited me the best each year and now, well I have my job at the bank but couldn’t even work since I got sick…
“going with whatever suited me the best each year” So far that has worked for me but the worst thing is knowing that you are not financially stable. Hope you get better soon. Sounds like something nasty and icky you got there
We had always luck that our financial situation was fairly stable but it was sometimes still nervewrecking when not getting a new job.
Well I just hope my health will get better towards the end of the year..
To see life through retrospective glasses…
Time indeed passes. Not quite the way we think, and it passes whether we like it or not. Still, might as well enjoy it!
I certainly thought my life would be different. My love life in particular. When I was little i thought I would be a paleontologist, and after that I thought I would be a comic book artist. Can’t complain that I seemed to have turned out to be a writer.
Funny, do you know that on Wednesday the 21st it’s Back to the Future day! 2015 did not have the flying cars and hoverboards we expected, did it?
Hope your health gets better.
You got pretty close to becoming a comic artist as a writer 🙂
Didn’t know about the back to future day need to mark it in my calendar! Sometimes it is pretty funny so read old books or watch some older movies regarding how life will look like in year 20xx
Yeah! I don’t know if it was big where you come from, but much of my childhood was centered around Back to the Future and I’m very excited that the actual day is coming up… Make sure you celebrate by watching Part II, or even the whole classic trilogy!
Back to the future is also pretty famous here. For myself I missed the main fame of the movies as I was born 87, so I was too young for the initial screening in the cinemas 🙂
Anyways, though I ain’t a back to the future geek I love the movies as I have watched several times in my teens
Hey I was too young as well, but that’s what VHS was for. But as said I don’t know how popular the film franchise was in Europe ~
Oh well, cant really say that either however it was pretty popular here and still is. In school we made all kind of back to the futre references, there were toys, clothes etc what I at least remember. Of course they also showed here the cartoon 🙂
I hope you will get better soon. I am sorry to hear of your poor health. It’s healthy to go with the flow, difficult as it may pose at times but it allow one to see the world with a fresh pair of eyes.
Thank you. For now it is really just the best to go with the flow. I just let everything happen and don’t try to do anything special until my health returns to normal again 🙂
Hi Timo. We are so sorry to hear that you have been so unwell that you had to fly home shortly after arriving in China. We know how much you were looking forward to the break and we were counting down with you. Whatever it is, we hope that you get better soon. Take care of yourself and we will keep an eye out for your posts as they appear.
Thank you so much, really. It was not just that I felt so unwell thati had to leave but it was clear from the beginning (the weeks before) that I won’t be able to stay that long in China. I even had to get a “safety person” for the flight there and back to make sure I get all medications and possible professional help in case things go south. He was a nice guy though but still it’s a financial drain to have someone like that with you and furthermore also just shows how bad things are for you when you need this kind of help.
Right now things are more stable than back then due to all kind of help and I hope the get more independent in the next months 🙂
This post is very touching and wise. You’re so right. We don’t know what the future holds. But I do know that many people are wishing you happiness and improved health.
It took me many years to realize that my future would not be what I expected. I had a degree in Elementary Education, and I was a teacher for a couple of years before our first child was born. I always thought I would go back to teaching. And even though we moved abroad where I couldn’t get a work permit, I thought we would move home soon. Instead, we stayed overseas for about 20 years. Eventually I learned that no one’s life turns out the way he or she expected.
Wishing you well.
Life is surely full of surprises. New things are around every corner. For myself there are some new plans already made and now we just have to wait and see how my health will cope.
Thank you so much for your words, now I just need to convince my body to follow all the good wishes 🙂
Hope your health will be better, CCF. Stay calm and do your favourite things these days when you find time.
YEs, time is cruel and relentless. I lost a sister over 6 years ago. She’s was only 1 yr. younger than I. Lost my father 14 months ago @85 yrs.
Life is indeed fragile and within our time, much to learn and provide the best of ourselves. Be there for Nathan.
For the past years I always worry about my parents as they are both not the youngest anymore. Thankfully they are both still in good shape and each summer they spend four months in their cottage in Finland and bicycle on a daily basis. My father is now 74 and still competes in bicycle competitions
Jack, my partner will turn 73 this yr. I just turned 57 a few years ago. 🙂 Are you their only “child”?
Well I am the only child from their marriage however I have a half brother from a previous marriage of my father. He moved out when I was just six years old, he is twenty years older than me
I just read this post and I was very touch by your words on how life never ends up as planned. I hope you’re health is getting better (it sounds like it is from your recent posts?) and that even though you haven’t imagined a life like this, you’re happy with it:)
Life is surely getting better these days. Things were rather dark the second half of 2015 but now I am getting better by the day. Well expect now…yesterday was my birthday and I spent it in my bed with a bad flu and high fever
First off, take good care of yourself and stay healthy! (Get well soon!)
Secondly, I think that this happens to pretty much everyone, I mean the fact that these dreams of a certain future take a different turn. In my case, the me from ten or more years back never expected life to be the way it is now. The me five years ago, did.
Thirdly, your post was very touchy. ;-;
(I’ll be looking around your blog now that I stumbled upon it~)
Thank you so much. My health is thnkfully improving slowly ever since that post that I am now even able to travel next month to China.
Ten years ago I had no idea what life would bring and five years ago it slowly developed into some sense. However five years ago I never expected to ever live in Germany again, life is full of changes 🙂
I’m really happy to hear that you’re doing a lot better!
Yes, certainly, life is full of surprises.
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I don’t think you can ever plan your life 100%.. you can have goals, and dreams, and hopes, but they might not always work out the way you expect. This is because you are not living in a bubble, and events around you affect you. This can be a good thing! You have a wonderful family, even your MIL cares a lot about your family in her own way.
I hope your health gets better soon! Your health is very important. I’ll still enjoy reading your posts, even if they are less often!
That article was from last autumn and I have to say that my Health has been I proving ever since this year. By now I can manage much more again as can be seen by being in China on holidays again 🙂
Life is always changing and back then I didn’t know even when I would ever be healthy again
Oh really, it’s from last autumn? Haha I didn’t see the date, I thought it was in chronological order. I am glad your health is improving! It can seem like you will never be well when you are sick, but I am glad you are on the mend.
It was a long time feeling like this for 9 months about so now I enjoy every day 🙂
There is lots to think about… 🙂
There is always too much to think about when having too much spare time/ not being able to fall asleep. Thankfully things changed for me since that post from last autumn so my perspective aint that dark any longer 🙂