How people help form your life

13 October, 2010

I’m not the sort of person to carry on friendships when contexts change. For example I’ll befriend colleagues in a workplace whilst we have something in common but once we go our separate ways those friendships will probably end. Just like when I left Facebook I lost contact with people I primarily knew through Facebook. It’s partially laziness on my part but it’s also acknowledging that friendships don’t have to last forever; people weaving in and out of each other’s lives like chain-link fencing.

However it is amazing when you reflect on your life, your knowledge and things you own and recall how people you know or once knew contributed to making you the person you are. Even something as simple as my pocketknife I still own and use that a friend at college helped me buy because I was underage. The book Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain that Linda and Ash recommended to me last October that’s sitting on the desk in front of me. The tripod next to me that my parents bought as a birthday present several years ago. The computer under my desk that friends on Twitter helped me spec and assemble. The dolphin wood carving on the bookshelf in the corner of this room signed by Mandawuy from Yothu Yindi when we toured the Solomon Islands in 2005. My Crumpler bag which once again my Twitter friends recommended to me and who even helped me choose the colour of my Asus Eee PC laptop while I was standing in Harvey Norman two years ago.

So many people who’ve influenced who I have become in less tangible ways, offered advice and changed my mind on things. I don’t talk to most of those people any more but I remember those times fondly and am thankful for how they’ve helped me.

It’s incredible to just sit and contemplate your thoughts and possessions and trace back the origin of those things to friends, family and even strangers and marvel at how you’re just a node in a network, a product of a million factors, thousands of contacts with people directly and indirectly, physical and non-physical things.

One comment

  1. Love that last paragraph. And for some reason, I find it rather comforting.

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