5 min readFeb 3, 2024

“Legacy?”, I ask, as hundreds of people are queuing in the cold morning, shivering under three-layered clothing, waiting for a turn to marvel at the set of stones carved by a bearded white man over a hundred years ago.

“Where is mine?”

Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash

Certainly not that, I believe, as I sit in front of the empty page, as empty as I am, my ideas refusing to listen, to arrange themselves, to dance the intricate dance of making sense and sparking a thought in someone else’s mind.

Certainly not that, I think, as I judge my POVs and insights, realising I’m just not talented enough to leave a mark, a lasting mark, any mark that might spark heated discussions between the granddaughters of children born today.

At least it won’t be that, I shrug, somehow complacent in my mediocrity, elated I’m not one of those people digging up the earth and burning its resources, just so another old, white man can travel across the globe, alone, unbothered in a matter of hours.

At least it won’t be that, I thank, as I see tiny hands and tiny feet, separated from tiny bodies, charcoal under the ruins, taken too soon, too fast, too brutal, by and from the will of insane minds tucked behind empty walls, as their people ar dying, at least it won’t be that.

“Where’s my legacy?”, I wonder again, as I’m singing the lyrics of my soul, along side thousands of other souls, a stadium full of people, tiny ants walking the same steps, riding the wave and riding the sunset into the night, one heart, one mind, the orchestra of thousands of voices conducted by the band on stage, artists turning music into experiences and songs into lasting memories, something I will never, never be able to do.

No, it can’t be that, I think, as my words are never good enough or bold enough, they don’t strike any chord, I lose myself into the intricacies of style and texture, losing the sight, the outward appearance being more important than the depth, “not only this, but also that”, I type, because that’s what the AI suggests.

Certainly not that, I think, seeing the mother and the child lock eyes, the love frequency palpable between them, “that is not me,” I think, as I see the Woman becoming the Mother, her existence forever wrapped around another human being, “that’s dangerous,”, that’s what I believe about the only connection my mother and her mother, and her mothers’ mother ever knew.

“So if not that, then what”, I wonder, as I create tiny specs of stories in all mediums I can think of, sound, and sight, and mind opening themselves up, endlessly stretching, a frozen lake in the Arctic Pole, a pristine lake waiting for me to arrive, to leave a mark, anything, please, anything.

“Does it have to be one purpose?”, I wonder, as my friends are hugging me, as I hug them back after a good cry, my tears or theirs, it doesn’t really matter, there’s a certain intimacy in our closeness, a beauty in how life doesn’t change one bit, but it does feel lighter when we are together and they get it and I get it, and we’re together and we know it.

“Does it have to be one purpose?”, I wonder, as my dog tippy taps and rushes for cuddles, places her head on my lap, hugs me with her paws, a bundle of fur and joy, 25 kilograms of unconditional love over me, showering me with an affection I earned so easily.

“Maybe purpose isn’t a matter of doing, but a matter of being?”, I muse, while I pick up the phone, pick up the tab, pick up the slack, pick them up, pick them up, pick them up, I am in abundance and I can pour as the cup will never empty and the love I give today comes back tomorrow, always, always, always, comes back tomorrow.

Maybe purpose and legacy aren’t about leaving something behind, a physical token, proof of your existence, maybe it’s something more… ethereal?

Maybe the legacy is that person choosing to carry an empty bottle in their backpack until they find a trashcan, walk a couple of kilometers instead of taking the car, breathing instead of raging, calling instead of ghosting, crying instead of hiding, doing instead of waiting.

Maybe the smiles I placed in the box of smiles are infinite, as one cannot take one without leaving another in return, lips carrying kind words while kissing, hugs touching hearts instead of convenience, there’s a certain purpose in living intentionally, choosing the light instead of the darkness, and choosing to forgive and understand, because we are all broken, hurting, trying to put back pieces of ourselves after they’ve been ripped apart, and we don’t always have the luxury to be compassionate and understanding.

Maybe stories heal, and songs bring happiness, and words can wake people up, but so does the choice to be there, to listen, to make someone feel less alone, less misunderstood, less of a victim, more of a surviver, even the most dire of circumstances can feel less painful if you have kind eyes looking at you, teaching you how to be gentle, and trust, trust, trust, the people and the process.

Ikigai (生き甲斐, lit. ‘a reason for being’) is a Japanese concept referring to something that gives a person a sense of purpose, a reason for living.

“Iki” meaning “to live,” and “gai” meaning “reason.”

It’s a concept that encourages people to discover what truly matters to them and to live a life filled with purpose and joy.

Joy is the purpose.

Life itself is encouraging.

I’ll be there to lift you up and make you trust and smile, the burden lighter, the night shorter, the domino effect of spreading kindness without asking yourself why, how, or where.