The Story From a Stranger

Earlier this morning, I’m so delighted to know that I have finished my chores just right on time. When I knew that I didn’t have anything much to do anymore, I proceeded to do my old business – I surf the internet.

I downloaded music, watched videos, read blogs, checked updates, sent emails to friends, until I got myself stuck to one of the trendiest networking sites on the internet. I visited the Books and Entertainment Chat group of this particular site. And unexpectedly, I found out that people are talking different(personal interest and non-sense) stuff until I got a message from a stranger who was looking for a live person for a friendly chat.

In point of fact, I was also looking for someone to talk to, so I messaged the stranger and without a doubt, he messaged me back. That time, the stranger was just goofing online and chatting with family members. Like me, he hasn’t been on this site long himself as well.

His name is Jim. He’s living in the US with his lovable wife and having a very simple life. Though that was the very first time that we chat, it felt like we’ve already known each other for many years.

I was surprised when he shared that he has a few cousins and friends who are in the military and one of them is in Germany. I thought to myself for a few seconds, flashing back the things what a soldier can do unconditionally for his country. Then I grasped that, Jim is not really living a simple life after what he told me.

Being in a military is a very serious job! “Many young adults put off their college dreams and career aspirations and take on other work to make ends meet. Some may turn to odd jobs that they may need to consider commissioning into military service.” I just thought that we’re so lucky enough that I and any members of my family don’t have to do the same thing.

Jim knows to himself that the military is a very serious profession. He had lost numerous friends that have fought for his country. This job had taken many of his friends’ lives. I couldn’t imagine living his life knowing that maybe one day, one of his cousins or friends will be gone forever. He confessed that it is hard to lose close friends but he knows that they were doing what they love to do. And the real sad part for Jim is to be the person to tell their families. He has no choice at all, but to tell them the truth.

I can feel the pain that Jim is going through as we kept on exchanging our stories. If I were in his situation, I would completely feel the same way. But nothing dismayed me more when he messaged me this:

“I know that they loved doing what they do and as friends, we all shared some good times and we knew that one day it might come to this (gone, without saying goodbye).”

I asked Jim if he had been in the military. He said they wouldn’t accept him because of his health. He was born with heart condition. Even though his health is good by now and his heart is surgically repaired according to his doctor, they still wouldn’t accept him. Because of this, I knew then that he is better than to be in the military.

As we go along with our intimate conversation, Jim made me realize that we are not the only people who have worse experiences in life. It must be hard for him to accept it or to let go and move on for just a small period of time. He needs to face such situation that one of his loved ones will be gone for just one blink of an eye. He even told me that his friends say he’s already crazy and the military would’ve made it worse. But after all these years, he still stands and continues to believe that his purpose in life is to be there for his family and friends who need him very much, to be a good example for his children and for him to still watch them grow. I learned a lot for just 30 minutes of time, chatting with Jim. After all, he was never a stranger to me anymore.

For me, Jim is the strongest man that I’ve ever known. Though we are living in different sides of the world, his experience is not different than many of us had. No matter what you are and where you are, indeed, all of us have a purpose in life. And for Jim, that is no other than to be a strong pillar for his friends and loved ones without owning any weapons.

He shared me this inspiring motto of his:

“Spend as much time as you can with the people you are close and say anything that needs to be said because you never know when the last day of your life is going to be.”

Thank you so much for the opportunity of knowing you, Jim.

From Jim to his cousins and friends and to all the brave men behind the military service, I salute you for being such the most generous and strongest people living on earth. No matter where you are, I know that God watches you, your loved ones and your friends.

Until next time!

8 thoughts on “The Story From a Stranger

  1. That is so true. They’re there to protect their country and defend for their rights without asking any in return. It’s either they volunteer (because they want to) or there are laws that some people have to be in the military, even if they do not want to be.
    Like what you said, Hasty, we need to learn the process of living our lives like it is our last.
    Thanks! I really adore your sincerity!

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