Yesterday, I watched the finale to my favorite show, How I Met Your Mother. It was a tear-jerker and it really made me sad thinking that the show is finally over after a great 9 years.
Now before I say anything else, I promise I’m not going to spoil the ending for all of you HIMYM fans because I’m simply going to be talking about the “journey” of this show, not the “destination”. In all of these 9 years building up to meeting Ted’s beloved wife, we realize that this show isn’t necessarily about seeing who this mother is, but it’s in fact watching and enjoying the good times that Ted experienced with his close-knit group of friends. From season 1 to the very finale, we see how much each character has grown and developed from their past selves and how different things are. Some viewers may have thought the finale was a rushed episode, but I disagree because we have to remember that this show is in Ted’s perspective and that he cared about the destination, but he cared more of how he reached it with his best friends by his side. As a result, this ties in to the idea that life is not about making it to that final destination point, but it is how you got there in the first place and the memories that you created in the process.
In Grapes of Wrath, the Joads eventually reach California in search of work after being booted out of their own home. But, in reality, California is not the main focus of the story. Yes, it may symbolize dreams and hopes of many migrants from Oklahoma, but the novel is about the conflicts and hurdles the Joads have to face on the way to California as well as the problems they have in California. It may not be as happy as HIMYM of course, but it does pack the same concept that the final point isn’t everything.
So as you live your everyday life, remember not to try and rush growing up. Live in the moment and let everything fall into place. But most of all, enjoy the journey of life.
Even on your worst day, even when you feel like everything is falling apart, and even when you feel like nothing is going your way, know that you are not alone. There are millions of people out there that are going through something similar; we are a lot more alike than we think.
We all share similar struggles, sure every battle is unique to the person, but we can relate. No one’s life is perfect, no matter how hard they try. Bumps along the road are inevitable. But as you get over those bumps, there are people right along side you.
In Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, the Joad family is kicked off there farm that they have had for generations and are forced to take a long journey to California in hopes that life will be better over there. On this long and difficult journey, they are not alone however. They have company from the Wilson family and meet new people at every rest stop. The truly beautiful thing is that all these struggling families worked together to help the other family as best they could. “Twenty families became one family, the children were children of all. The loss of home became one loss, and the golden time in the West was one dream.” They faced their struggles together, and were able to overcome them as one.
Whenever you feel alone, remember that no matter what you are going through, someone out there is going through the same thing. You are never alone. Don’t give up.
Life is like a journey. You have to work towards your dreams and aspirations. You have to persevere, no matter who tough it gets. There will be bumps along the way, but once you reach what you that goal, all your hard work pays off because quite frankly, you have made it. You have completed yet another journey in your life.
I think that is what kept Tom Joad, from The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, going. After being released on parole from prison, Tom embarks on this journey to find his way home. It’s a tough and long voyage- filled with hitch- hiking and strange conversations with a pastor he used to know- but nothing stops him as he strives to get home to his family. Things don’t go according to plan when he finally arrives home, to find his house empty and broken down. A familiar local tells Tom and the pastor, Jim Casey, about how his family had moved to his Uncle John’s house- which was eight miles away- because they had been chased off their land by money hungry banks. Now if you think that another eight miles will stop Tom from reuniting with his parents, than you are dead wrong. He spends the next day continuing his journey home until he finally saw the “house, a square box, unpainted and bare, and the barn, low-roofed, and huddled” from afar. The looks on his parents faces was the moment his hard work to get home paid off, I’m sure.
As I read through the chapters of Tom’s expedition and reunion, I couldn’t help but think about Finding Nemo and how the moment that Nemo’s father found him was probably a lot like Tom’s reunion with his family: emotional and filled with joy. It didn’t matter that he had to encounter sharks, or that he almost died in the process the only thing that matters was the Nemo was back in his arms. Of course this example may be a bit cheesy, but think about it.
How many times in your life has your end result justified what you had to go through? My guess would be many times. Giving up may seem like such a good option at times, but trust me, if you keep trying and work through your battles, you will make it and your journey will be worth it.
You don’t even have to be working towards something, but merely working to survive and make it through. Living another day is an accomplishment to me. I guarantee you that your journey will be worth it because you are worth it.