When you think of home, what do you think of? Most people think of a physical object or place. When I think of home, I think of a feeling. Growing up, I moved 8 times in 12 years so the only thing constant about my home life was my family. As I grow older, the more I realize how much I need a supporting cast that loves me for me, and not for what I do. Having my family reminds me to stay grounded no matter what happens in my life.
This brings me to my second point about time. Yes, time. Time is something that we all have in common. Some individuals have more time on this earth than others but at the end of the day, we all have some type of time. So how are you spending your time? A good friend was murdered a couple years ago. Up until that point, I never really understood the value of time.
His name was Jordan, aka Huey. He was a guy who had a swagger about him that made you respect him. I remember back in the 6th grade he could touch the backboard and was able to dunk by 7th grade. But it wasn’t his athletic abilities that made people respect him; it was the way he carried himself. He was all of 5’5 but had the biggest personality.
I remember the day he died, I received a phone call from a friend who gave me the news. Immediately, I went into denial. I drove over to his house to see if it were true, and sure enough, it was. I didn’t really know what to say or do; I sat in silence trying to comprehend what just happened. I couldn’t understand. He was just over 21. To be taken that early with so much potential, it made me think about my life. And as I sat at his casket, ready to say goodbye, I told him I was going to make it big for us. I was going to do something that was going to change the world. Every game I played from then on, I would write his number on my hand as a focal point to remind me of him.
So moving on with my life, I feel that I can accomplish anything I put my mind to because I have the opportunity. Jordan doesn’t have that opportunity but if he were here now, he would be taking full advantage of it. But see I use his death as motivation to continue to grow because he can’t. I feel as if he is vicariously living though me and I have no choice but to become great. I wouldn’t have that without a support system like my family. The world is full of opportunities; it is up to you to find them. We all have different starting points but it is up to you to determine where you want to finish.
Follow your heart and destiny. Always stay true to you!
By Marcus Alipate