This month has many significant life-changing dates in my lifetime that occurred after graduation from high school.

Many of us, who grew up in small towns, left to seek employment in larger metropolitan cities where career opportunities were better than our small town.

I left my parental home on a July 5 many years ago.  Before leaving, however, I was offered several jobs by local businesses.

One was to run the projector in our local theater.

Another was to learn to operate the Linotype machine at our weekly newspaper.

Also, in the pre-dial phone era I was to be “Central” and learn to connect people by telephone.

Refusing these offers turned out to be wise, youthful decisions, leaving me to pursue my ambition to be a secretary.  It was difficult to gain employment because I had no experience and also did not attend a Commercial College having learned to type and take shorthand in high school.

Some of the local townspeople left behind resented those of us who left to seek employment elsewhere.   They felt rebuffed, but that was not the case.  We just wanted to see what was on “the other side of the mountain.”

Remember my career opportunities I mentioned above?     With the invention of television, the local theater closed due to lack of business when people stayed home to watch this wonderful, new invention instead.

During WWII, lead, necessary for the manufacture of ammunition, as well as for the Linotype machine, became unavailable to us.

“Central” was no longer necessary when the dial system replaced her.  So I would have been unemployed.

When I returned to my home town the first time after leaving home, the first three people I met, did not remember me and five others did not know I had left!

Remember the old saying about how much you will be missed?  Put your hand in a bucket of water and then pull it out and observe how much water you have displaced and what a hole you leave behind!

Those were wise, life-changing decisions in my young life.

With no regret, I sometimes wonder what my life would have been like had I chosen to stay where I was and accepted those offers.

Many of us could pause like that and dream what might have been.  A fun thing to do on a hot, sultry day in July.