I have been blessed beyond measure to be a news correspondent. I have the opportunity to meet a lot of fascinating people. In the beginning, these people look like just regular people you might pass by during the day. However, I have learned that once you get the chance to talk them, really talk to them. You get a chance to see a glimpse of their greatness. The fire inside them that makes them determined to awaken daily with a mission of continued strife in making the world a better place.
This past week, I met a strong and divine woman that was 92. She did not look her age. Her hair was neatly styled and colored dirty blonde. She wore a simple cute aquamarine lounge suit, kind of like a fancy sweat suit. It was around 9 pm at local venue with a live concert. It was not her age-defying looks or the time of evening that caught my attention.
This lovely lady began to interject into my conversation with a friend of hers that I was interviewing. She was sharp. We exchanged hellos while she was complaining to her friend. She stole the interview that I had been working on. That is when I decided this woman had a story to tell. Wow! She did have one.
This 92 year old woman was an immigrant from Germany. She lived in Germany during WWII. She told me how the tanks rolled down the cobblestone streets and between the buildings around her home. She was 14 years old when she witnessed the greatest atrocities of mankind.
I had one question for her. “What kept you going? What keeps you going today?”
Silence fell upon this once chatter box of a lady. She just looked blank.
“I don’t know she answered. I just know I had to stay alive. I had to keep myself alive. Only I could take care of or make sure that I could stay alive. I do everything for myself. I did then. I do now.” Said the woman.
“You’re amazing. You should go out and mentor kids or young adults. You’ve survived one of the most horrific events in life. You are so brave and strong.” I replied.
She looked at me for awhile into my eyes and then said, “No,no, I did it for me. I don’t understand the world we have today where adults do not leave their parent’s home. They don’t want to drive car. They just don’t want to do anything for themselves. That was never me. I had to. I had to do it all for me, to survive.”
Today, no matter where you are in life, no matter what your journey is, I hope you can accept the wisdom of WWII survivor and keep moving toward your goals for your own survival. Do it for you for your own survival.