While waiting for my breakfast, I noticed a child contentedly sitting in the high chair provided by the restaurant. His mother was waiting for her turn to order at the counter. Every few seconds, she’d give the boy a smile or take photos of him. The boy calls to the mother, sees her react to his call, and then he’d play coy and go back to studying his chair more.
The boy called for his mother. She responds with a smile and a wave. The boy’s reaction was priceless. It was more than the smile he gave back. He was beaming as he studied the details of his chair, smiling to himself, all content.
During childhood, I guess things are simpler. You make sound and you don’t stop until you get the attention of that person you want. As one grows older, things become more complex. It’s not a simple anymore. And that sense of contentment, that sense of confirmation that one only gets when getting a good feedback from specific individuals – it’s a rarity. Well, it does depend on how good one is in getting one’s worth known. So much for waiting to have one’s efforts appreciated.
As one gets way older, one realizes that to get that sense of contentment, one only needs oneself’s approval and confirmation. If you’re happy with what you’ve accomplished, then everything was worth it. It takes a years of waiting and hoping and feeling unappreciated to get to this state.
In the end, it is yourself that decides how meaningful your life was – it’s yours after all.