Dying man’s Daily Journal – I/YOU can Make a Difference in this World

This past while I have been in a bit of a somber mood. Reflecting back on my life, just on life in general. I think that most if not all, as they realize they are nearing the end of their days may do this. All to often I think regrets come to the surface. There is the very obvious regret that you are nearing the end of your days. For most I don’t think age is a factor at all. No matter how old you are, when you reach this point it is too soon, we want more time. Memories seem to surface out of no where causing regrets. thoughts of things said or unsaid, done or not done.

I think that is eased at least a little if we can look back and appreciate we have had a good life, a successful life. As we went through our lives day by day, there may have even been a lot of turmoil, problems and issues of ever sort. Now with our 20/20 hind sight, we can look back and see the moments that at the time seemed so devistating were in fact just minor bumps in the road of life, really not even worth a second thought.

When you reach this point, if you are pondering the “success” of your life. All thoughts turn to the person, the human being you were while here. Financial success, career success all of  that suddenly mean nothing. We look at ourselves as how successful were we as a human being.

On a previous post a dear blogging friend Cat left her thoughts on this:  “When I die, I only hope it matters that I lived.” That’s how I measure my own success — if I’ve left the world a little better than I found it, if I’ve helped people and animals in need to the best of my ability, then I’ve been successful.”

Cat I appreciate that thought, it really says it all. To know I mattered, my time here mattered because I left the world a little bit better than I found it. The world is a little bit better because I was here. Now to some that may sound like a pretty lofty of even egotistical idea, the “WORLD” is better because I was here. I mean geesh, come on what can little old me do that could change the world.

Many seem to have the idea in their heads that to change the world would mean something like discovering the cure of cancer or bringing about world peace. No, for sure those would be wonderful accomplishments. Let’s face it, for most of us such things are beyond our reach. I ask this though, does it have to mean if I can’t do something huge I shouldn’t bother doing anything. There are a gazillion things we can do daily, think about it. Recycle one bottle, pick up one piece of trash, donate a little time to helping a friend or a charity….. that list is endless. i know many will think, yeah, why bother. Something that small would never make a difference. That is where you are wrong, every little bit helps, every little bit is a step maybe just a baby step but a step in the right direction.

This brings to mind the star fish story which I know I have posted before:

A woman was walking along a beach when she saw a man scooping up starfish off the sand and tossing them into the waves. Curious, she asked him what he was doing. He replied “When the tide goes out it leaves these starfish stranded on the beach. They will dry up and die before the tide comes back in, so I am throwing them back into the sea where they can live.”

The woman laughed, “But this beach is miles long and there are hundreds of stranded starfish, most will die before you reach them – do you really think throwing back a few starfish is going to make a difference?”

The man picked up a starfish and looked at it and threw it into the waves. “It makes a difference to this one” he said.

4 Responses to Dying man’s Daily Journal – I/YOU can Make a Difference in this World

  1. souldipper says:

    Thank you, Bill, for this truth that (I’m positive) will be mine to hold as well. As I read, I thought of a plastic bag I saw when I was out walking. Plastic bags are a plague to this planet, but the danged thing was in a big watery ditch and I didn’t want to get soaked. I forgot about that bag. TIL NOW!! I’m going back that way with a long stick. I agree with you, it’s the little things…

    Good for you my friend, every little bit, no matter how seemingly small it may be counts in the big picture.

  2. Mel says:


    Matters to this one.

  3. meg says:

    I’m dying. This is the first time i’ve said or typed it out loud. I came across your blog and this post got to me. Reflecting on my life and trying to find where I matter, what difference I’ve made is hard. Yes, I’ve helped other people cope with their lives and deaths and that should give me a sense of something but it doesn’t. I find myself faacing my own death completely alone. I’ve reached the grand old age of 42 and have not aa single friend or family member. When the doctor said that my condition was terminal he asked if there was anyone he could call for me. The fact there was nobody caused me more pain than the prognosis. Reflecting on my life in the face of my death makes me wonder if loneliness will kill me before my diseased body gets the chance.

    Hi Meg, welcome to the blog, I thank you for stopping by and leaving this message.
    It is like I can feel you pain as I read your words and my heart goes out to you. I with I had some magic words that could help ease your burden, you pain. There just are none that I know of.
    I have so many questions I would like to ask you. There is so much I would like to say to you but that is all based on my experience and my feelings. The journey we are both on is an individual journey and we must each come to terms with it in our own way/ways.
    Yes it is an individual journey and yes it is a lonely journey but it does not have to be made alone. There are many many resources out there to help us in this stage of our lives. This blog being designed to be one tiny resource to which all can turn. It has been a huge help to me and others that have passed by. Please know you are welcome here at any time. Welcome to share any thoughts or feelings you may wish to. You are welcome to rant, rave, cry or what ever. Talking.writing about it does help, I know from experience. Here a group of friends from all over the world has gathered and has become truly what I consider to be a part of my family. We would be more than happy to have you join our family. A lot of loving, non-judgemental support is here for you should you wish.
    I hope you don’t mind but I am going to email you directly

    • Cat says:

      Meg, from reading all of the recent posts on this blog, it’s obvious you have already made a difference here. You’ve affected everyone who reads this blog and allowed them to open their hearts to you, and that matters. I hope that you will continue to come here to chat. You’ve got friends here already, and we’ll support you as best we can.

      right on Cat.

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