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Cruiser's avatar

What do you consider the most important event of your life so far?

Asked by Cruiser (34999 points ) January 29th, 2014

Aside from marrying the love of your life, or the birth of your children, what event has impacted your life the most?

For me it was buying the company I work for.

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41 Answers

hearkat's avatar

On a personal level and not including romance or procreation, it was getting a Master’s Degree and becoming fully licensed and certified in a profession I enjoy – even 20+ years later.

Sociopolitically, the attacks that occurred on 9/11/2001 have been the most important event in my lifetime. They impacted me on a deep personal level, too. – in terms of realizing what is truly important in life and changing my perspective.

Cupcake's avatar

Becoming a parent at 16 not only changed my life trajectory, but it changed me as a person.

Within the next several months, I will receive my Masters degree, I will give birth to my third child (my second with my loving, supportive husband) and my son will graduate from high school and go to college. He is an intelligent, passionate young man with good morals and values and is a very loyal friend. He has, so far, avoided the youthful temptations that I have been afraid would emotionally take the place of his absent father.

There were many tearful nights where I did not believe I (we) would ever end up where I am (we are) now.

janbb's avatar

Most important in what way?

I guess having a brother who died and later being sexually abused probably had the most impact on my psyche.

ragingloli's avatar

My construction?

DWW25921's avatar

Discovering PEZ dispensers. It was truly a glorious milestone.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Being born is pretty much the biggest even that made a difference to me.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

Seeing the Boston Red Sox win the World Series after 86 years. (No, I’m not exaggerating.) Not that I’d been around to witness al 86 years, but I’d suffered through plenty of them.

dougiedawg's avatar

Winning the Nobel Peace Prize the first time was very exciting;)

Coloma's avatar

More so than even a horrible divorce 11 years ago, losing my work, health insurance, home and pets last spring. I will never rebound from my losses and am facing a harsh reality of poverty as I go into my later middle age and old age. I remain hopeful but being a realist the future looks grim indeed. I have a pot of Oleander tea on standby should it become any more bleak than it already is. lol

hug_of_war's avatar

I’ve talked about it ten million times, but dropping out of college. It was the right decision, and I went back to (a different) college a semester later but it shaped my life financially, career-wise, and emotionally in ways I didn’t know at the time. That was 7ish years ago so I’m hoping a more positive event will reign soon.

filmfann's avatar

The single event with the most impact on my life was probably getting a job with the Phone Company. That paid for my homes, my family, my hobbies, my excesses, my cars, and gave me a level of respectability.
Was that the most important event in my life? No, my marriage was. My wife gave me direction, purpose, affection, and my children. Wonderful as it is, I could not have done that without the job.
Then there is the luck of being born into a loving, stable family. You cannot discount that advantage. Plus being born in America, and I guess White during racially charged times.

Aster's avatar

Moving, unwillingly, from New Jersey to Texas at sixteen. It changed my entire life forever. From a small town to Dallas, Texas was quite a shock.

LuckyGuy's avatar

April 2009 – The day I received the horrible results from my first PSA test.
Welcome to a whole new world, Cancer Boy!

There are other events but that one was the first that came to mind.

ucme's avatar

Placing 5th in the annual dwarf juggling festival, held in the garden of our local vicar.
I’d have placed higher, but one of the little buggers was a little overweight.

livelaughlove21's avatar

I was greatly affected by moving to a different school in the third grade. It completely changed my personality. I went from an outgoing kid with a lot of friends to a shy, introverted, socially challenged one. And that didn’t change until high school.

Another big event was moving from Chicago to South Carolina when I was 12. I’m fairly certain my life would be very different now if I’d never left.

LuckyGuy's avatar

^^ That lab test result ultimately brought me to this site.

keobooks's avatar

Moving to San Francisco after flunking out of college in Indiana. I grew up and matured a lot after discovering what it was like without mom and dad paying all the bills and cleaning up all my messes. I went from a lazy sloppy person who partied all the time to a responsible productive memer of society.

KNOWITALL's avatar

My half sister telling me that no matter what happened between us, I’d never join my father’s family for holiday or anything like that at all. It ended any hope I had of rectifying a sad situation.

filmfann's avatar

@keobooks I don’t know if “Memer of society” was done on purpose, but you get a Great Answer for that.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@KNOWITALL “It ended any hope I had of rectifying a sad situation.”

She managed to make a sad situation even sadder. How very unfortunate.

anniereborn's avatar

Probably my divorce

SwanSwanHummingbird's avatar

Getting married.

ucme's avatar

My birth

downtide's avatar

The day I finally told my husband that I wanted a sex change.

Cruiser's avatar

@livelaughlove21 I would gladly trade places with you as it has been averaging -15 degrees without wind chill for the last few weeks here in Chicago

zenvelo's avatar

Other than marriage, divorce, the birth of my son and then my daughter, it was getting sober on April 22, 1986.

Beyond that, quitting smoking on August 22, 1988.

dxs's avatar

Yeah. Being born for me, too. If I were to say something else, then it was leaving my parent’s house.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@LuckyGuy How did that bring you to Fluther?

Aster's avatar

@LuckyGuy I know a man who had prostate cancer , had it out and now he’s seventy four and fine. He does wear some sort of adult pad? He goes on cruises all the time.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Cruiser Ha, no thanks! We just had our first snow in three years. It’s 29 degrees and we’ve got about two inches of quickly melting snow on the ground. All the schools along with a bunch of businesses closed and people were rushing out to get milk and bread. The roads have been nearly vacant since right before the snow started yesterday evening. Silly, but hey, my husband and I got a free day off work!

Bluefreedom's avatar

For me, it has probably been the 20 years that I have served in the military and being able to deploy to countries around the world and experience other customs and cultures.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@Aster After the prostate was removed I got to “enjoy” incontinence for a little while. I had sling surgery and that fixed it. Whew!

talljasperman's avatar

Getting a 100% award in grade 1 math.

Rarebear's avatar

The day I saw my first Star Trek rerun in the ‘70s.

SavoirFaire's avatar

If we’re leaving aside birth and marriage, then I suppose it was choosing between music and philosophy. I took both majors in college and had to decide which to make my career. I would have a much different life if I had chosen music, particularly if I had chosen to keep going with being a performer.

Paradox25's avatar

The day I had realized that you can’t please everyone to your liking, and that even if you could would it still be worth it if you still end up being miserable deep down inside. My people pleasing and politically correct days are over. This was a gradual process for me though, and I still have some bugs to work out yet :-)

Cruiser's avatar

@SavoirFaire In what way would your life be much different had you chosen to be a musician?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@Cruiser I’d travel a lot more and teach a lot less. Had I chosen music, I wouldn’t have gone the academic route. Even if I had continued on to get a master’s degree, that would have been the end of it. I was never a good enough pianist to be a voice teacher, and I had no interest in teaching music history or music theory. (This, in fact, was one of the biggest clues that philosophy was a better fit for me. I love teaching, so why didn’t I want to teach music?) Non-academic musicians have to go where the work is, and that changes frequently. I have a friend who moved to Europe, where the market for his speciality is better, just to keep afloat. Philosophers travel to give talks and go to conferences, but much less frequently.

This would probably have affected my marriage quite a bit. In fact, it might not have happened. My now-wife/then-girlfriend is a workaholic, and she likes having me around. So she wouldn’t be able to travel with me, and she wouldn’t like me being away so much. It also would have affected me economically. Non-academic musicians tend to be either very poor or very wealth. It’s an unpredictable, sink-or-swim business, and there’s only so many people who can be successful at once. Instead, I have a job that is very predictable in its advancement and that provides moderate security even at its lowest levels. For all the talk of graduate students getting shafted—and we do—my own program has provided me with enough income that my wife and I have never had to worry about affording food or rent. We couldn’t afford much of anything in the way of luxuries until I started taking on extra classes and she got promoted, but living on the streets was never a threat. My musician father, on the other hand, has come very close to that more than once.

Cruiser's avatar

@SavoirFaire Thanks for the in depth update. Life is full of what if’‘s. I have quite a few myself. Out of college for lack of any job at all, I worked for a short spell with my friends start up company and I was his first employee…he now has over 80 employees and runs the entire live feed for the super bowl with his fleet of portable broadcast trucks he builds, sells and rents.

I started two businesses after that and after 16 years took a stable job at the company I now work at. I always wonder what my life would be like had I stuck with those 2 fledgling businesses. On the other hand I now own this company. What if….

linguaphile's avatar

It’s taken me a while to think about my answer to this question—been following in the meantime.

I see “value” in a few different ways. There’s the “value” that comes from joyful moments—the value is in the exuberance. For that, I can’t pick just one—my kids birth, winning a long-coveted tournament, making it to the top of the Great Sand Dunes… all are joyful for different reasons. I look for joyful opportunities often—their number doesn’t diminish their value—just differentiates it from the next way I see value—

Another way I see “value” is the kind that comes from life-altering experiences—it doesn’t have to be a good experience to change your life for the better. For that, I can pick one event and that is the summer of 2010 when I spent almost one month in bed alternating between crying and sleeping. That was the most valuable turning point for me— I decided that I had to get myself out of hell and OWN my life, my future, my decisions, my psyche, my self-perception, my talents, my whole Self, and would have to learn not to be anyone’s whipping girl any longer. I also decided I had to be the one to climb out of Hell, because I sure as heck wasn’t getting any help. I haven’t looked back since.

jonsblond's avatar

Two things.

1. Being told I had a high probability that the spot on my lung was malignant and it may have metastasized. (After six weeks of tests, scans and biopsies I finally found out it was benign)

2. My mother’s ruptured brain aneurysm last year, then death 9 months later.

The little things don’t bother me as much as they used to before these things happened to me. These experiences also taught me how to be more patient and how to better show appreciation to those I love.

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