YOU MATTER! How do people find purpose in life at any age and stage of life. How can life, ultimately, Matter?
When looking back and forward on one’s life, did I mean something? What was my purpose?
This book is a collection of short essays that reflect on these questions and cover the different stages of life, from childhood to retirement. They are written by numerous authors from all walks of life, and mirror the diversity of the American experience.
They represent different races, genders, sexual orientations, ages, socioeconomic status, religious preferences, ethnic heritage, and professions. They come from the worlds of sports, entertainment, business, government, espionage, education, social work, and emergency medicine.
Some seek meaning in their faith; others in their works; still others in their immediate family, extended family, or family trees.
- Title : I Matter: Finding Meaning in Your Life at Any Age
- Authors : Harlan Rector, Edward Mickolus
- Publisher : Wandering Woods Publishers
- Publication Date : October 16, 2020
- Language : English
- Paperback : 121 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1735074713
- ISBN-13 : 978-1735074719
- Item Weight : 6.1 ounces
- Dimensions : 6 x 0.28 x 9 inches
“Inspiring stories and a real gem for your bookshelf! This small but mighty volume is a treasure box of captured stories about those rare moments in people’s lives that mattered. Plucked from the back corners of their memories, people from all over have come together to share snapshots of their past that have meant the most to them, or have made a huge impact in how their futures turned out. Although the stories are short, they are powerful, interesting and very moving. I highly recommend it for every personal library.” –an Amazon customer
TABLE OF CONTENTS
The Age of Innocence: Childhood / Elementary School
Christmas 1947, by Sue Jones
The Cherry Tree, by Sue Jones
The Cave-In, by Carol Spargo Pierskalla
Finding What Matters, by Carl Hermann
Making Lemonade, by Harlan Rector
A Love Letter, by Patricia Krause
Thank You, Chuck, by Greg Barry
Having, and Perhaps Becoming, That Special Teacher: Influencing Lives for Decades, by Ed Mickolus
The Age of Learning: High School / College
A Tribute in Time, by Sally Wahl Constain
Once Upon a Life in Three Words, by George McGovern
A Broken Body and a Broken Heart, by Don Walls
Kindness to a Stranger, by Chuck Brockmeyer
The Age of Responsibility: Adulthood
To Hell and Back, by Alonzo Smalls
On the Fifty Yard Line, by Michael Barrow
Let There Be L.I.G.H.T., by Harlan Rector
The Age of Action: Work/Career
Lemonade 2, by Harlan Rector
For the Love of Writing, by Tracy Tripp
Poetry, by Patricia Daly-Lipe
There’s Always Hope, by Greg Barry
My Life’s Work, by George McGovern
A Bank That Lends a Hand as Well as Money, by Diane Machaby
A Creative Sandwich, by Sheila Weinstein
What’s in a Name? by Ed Mickolus
The Telephone Call That Changed My Life, by Harvey Hofmann
The Age of Sharing: Family/Marriage/Children
Creativity Matters, by Harlan Rector
Miracles in a Doctor’s Daughter’s Life, by Emily Melendez
The Hitchhikers, by Diane Machaby
Crete Adventure, by Carol Spargo Pierskalla
I Am Iron Man, by Hollis Donaldson
Looking for Thankfulness, by Jennifer Lewis Keller
Opposites Matter, by Chuck Brockmeyer
How To Pick Up… Your Life, by Ed Mickolus
The Age of Reflection: Retirement
Finding Meaning in “Retired” Life, by Ed Mickolus
Everyone Retires, Not Always Contented, by Harlan Rector
Walking in the Shoes of the Homeless, by Tracy Tripp
Memories of Theo, by Chuck Brockmeyer
The End: Making a Difference After You’ve Gone, by Ed Mickolus
Epilogue/Book Club Questions
After Harlan wrote his first book, Once Upon a Corner in Detroit, a collection of profiles and caricatures of celebrities who were interviewed at WJR Radio in the early 1970s, Ed egged him on with the question, “It’s a promising start. So what’s your next book?” Harlan mulled this over for a while, and prayed on it. He soon received an answer: the idea for this book, a look at how people find purpose in life at any age and stage of life. How can life, ultimately, Matter? When looking back and forward on one’s life, did I mean something? What was my purpose?
Viktor Frankel viewed adult development as Man’s Search for Meaning. Gail Sheehy organized that search chronologically, calling them Passages. Daniel Levinson’s more formal building upon Sheehy’s work deemed them Seasons of a Man’s Life and Seasons of a Woman’s Life. We’ve combined these concepts, asking our authors to talk about points in their lives in which someone or some development dramatically affected their lives, preferably for the better, or they affected someone’s life, again, preferably for the better. Our chapters look at all points of one’s life, from childhood up through death.
Seized with the idea that we had not cornered the market on wisdom in this area, we reached out to our colleagues, some of whom we know quite well, some known only by reputation. Their replies were heartening; many inspiring.
Our authors come from all walks of life and mirror the diversity of the American experience. They represent different races, genders, sexual orientations, ages, socioeconomic status, religious preferences, ethnic heritage, and professions. They come from the worlds of sports, entertainment, business, government, espionage, education, social work, and emergency medicine. Some seek meaning in their faith; others in their works; still others in their immediate family, extended family, or family trees.
We hope you enjoy reading this book as much as we have compiling—and in some cases, writing—it. We encourage you to share in the writing part. At the end of each chapter, we’ve left blank space for you to write your micro-memoir of how you found meaning at each stage of your life. Do something kind each day and make a note of it.
Thanks for reading this book and for making a difference by your lives.
Harlan and Ed