Appreciate The Moment In 2022Feb 02, 2022 10:14PM ● By Jared Zornitzer
Life is a ticking clock, time is inexorable. One person may be living in the present, enjoying each moment as they come. Another may be absorbed by worries about the future. At the end of the day, who is living a more fulfilling life? Who will be able to look back at their life with no regrets? This year, my resolution is to do a better job of living in the moment so that I can avoid looking back on my life with remorse.
These ideas flooded into my mind during winter break. Without fail, as the end of the break approached, I could not believe how fast it had passed. We so easily take things for granted. For example, I was alive for 15 years before I was consciously thankful for my grandma, one of the most influential figures in my life. Undoubtedly, she had a large impact on my life before but only then did I perceive it. She instilled in me a core value—family comes first—through being such a steadfast figure in my life. Unfortunately, it was only in her last few years that I truly cherished her presence and influence on my life.
Similarly, I watched a movie over break where humans are on the brink of extinction. At the moment before the extinction event, the main character says, in a moment of revelation, “we really had everything.” Those are his last words. “Oh my god,” I thought, “those are the most tragic and poetic dying words.” Those words evoked a sudden shock; I knew in that instant that I better start believing that I have everything too. I resolved to keep that doctrine closer to my mind in 2022; that whatever I have is beautiful and enough and deserves my appreciation.
I was a young boy during those years that I didn’t comprehend my grandma’s impact, so I don’t really put myself at fault. I was always grateful whenever we spent time together, but what I discovered at age 15 is that there is a deliberate thinking process involved when one desires to fully appreciate someone or something. At the instant that you identify what is important to you, you must repeat its importance in your head until it becomes ingrained in your thoughts daily. The wonderful part is that if this subject is a person, your efforts will bring you much closer together. For me, I began calling my grandma several times per week. We talked about our days, upcoming events and the next time we would see each other. These phone calls brought me immense satisfaction for getting to touch base and connect with her.
Nobody wants to end up in the character from that movie’s shoes, where he only acknowledges the value of life at the moment of death. To ensure that we don’t, I believe that we must passionately pursue the goal of not letting a day slip by unappreciated.
Jared Zornitzer is a full-time college student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY studying engineering. An advocate of balancing work and school with exercise and healthy living, he loves hiking, biking, running, cooking, spending time with family and friends, and learning in his classes.