Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Life is short, so...

Every now and then it hits me: I'm almost 50 years old. If that is true, then I am "on the back nine," as a friend of mine said a few years ago. For those of you who don't play or know much about golf, that phrase refers to being on the second half of the golf course. If you are playing the full eighteen holes, the back nine are holes 10-18. I hope I don't live another 48+ years. Ninety-six years are simply too many to walk this planet. I don't want my children to have to pay my bills or visit me in a nursing home. No, no, no.

I don't "feel 48," whatever that means. Many people have told me that I don't "look 48" - whatever that means. Whether or not I feel or look my age, I am my age. I am less than four months from turning 49 - it's not too early to start birthday shopping for goodies to send my way, my friends. I am less than 16 months from hitting the half century mark. The odds are that the remainder of my life will be shorter than the time I've already spent on this magnificent planet we've been blessed with.

When I was a child, I asked my mother questions about being married and having children. I asked her about growing up and being a grown up. I told her that sometimes it felt like life was moving very slowly (during the school year, for example) and sometimes it felt like life was moving very fast (like during summer vacation). My mother told me that as I got older, the years would seem to go by faster and faster. I didn't want to believe her. I wanted her to be wrong about that. But she was right.

These past twenty-five years of my life are a blur.
I have a 20 year old daughter, soon to be 21.
I have a 17 year old son, soon to be 18.
I have been married for more than 23 years and have been with Steve for more than 27 years - more than half of our lives.
If I didn't have more than 250 journal volumes to refer to, I might be tempted to deny how old I am, how quickly these years have gone, how much I have seen and experienced during these 48 years of mine, and how short life is.

Life is short, folks.
Life is short, so hug your family members, your friends, your neighbors, but not the people you work with. That might get you fired.
Life is short, so make slow, sweet love to the one you adore.
Life is short, so eat dessert - but not everyday.
Life is short, so laugh at yourself, out loud.
Life is short, so read good books and juicy magazines.
Life is short, so offer your gifts and yourself to the world.
Life is short, so smile at the cashier, the parking attendant, and the delivery person.
Life is short, so sing and dance and listen to music you love.
Life is short, so spend as much time as possible with the people who matter to you.
Life is short, so tell your dear ones how you feel about them.
Life is short, so ask for forgiveness when you screw up.
Life is short, so when you receive a compliment, say "thank you," without excuse or explanation.
Life is short, so take photos - then you can be reminded of the beauty you have seen.
Life is short, so keep a journal - then you can read about your short life.

Life is too short to keep postponing our dreams, our hopes, and our love.
Life is too short to hide our true feelings.
Life is too short to downplay or ignore the feelings of others.

Life is too short to postpone telling the truth and asking for the truth to be told.
Life is too short to take it seriously all the time and also too short to take it lightly all the time.
Life is too short to hold back our laughter and choke back our tears.
Life is too short to stay home and stay safe.
Life is too short to drink and drive or text while driving.

Life is too short to judge other people and too short to worry about the judgment of others.
Life is too short to waste our energy and time and money on trying to impress others.
Life is too short to ignore the words of wisdom that have come to us from those who have gone before us.
Life is too short to deny that we too have words of wisdom in us that need to be shared.

Life is too short to eat only junk food and too short to eat only organic quinoa salads.
Life is too short to refuse to floss your teeth and end up with rotten teeth and bad breath.
Life is too short to eat food that gives you heartburn, gas, and acid reflux.
Life is too short to ignore what your body is telling you about what it needs and doesn't need.

Life is too short to obsess about having a museum-clean house.
Life is too short to allow clutter and dust bunnies to keep you from having friends and loved ones over to visit. 
Life is too short to iron your sheets and towels.

Life is too short to care what I think about whether your iron your sheets and towels.

Life is too short to care what I think life is too short to do.

Life is too short to take any of my advice. 

But that won't stop me from giving advice, will it? Absolutely not.

I hope you will get out of your house, out of your shyness, out from behind your limitations and enjoy it fully.
I hope you will find joy even in the difficult times. Especially in the difficult times.
I hope you will know love, deep, passionate, laughing in bed and laughing in the kitchen love.
I hope you will pour out your heart and your hopes in the company of people you trust.
I hope you will experience peace, the kind of peace that surpasses understanding.
I hope you will see beauty all around you and within you as well.
I hope you will travel often and be amazed by the wonder-filled world around you.
I hope you will feel the ocean breeze and the summer's heat.
I hope you will shiver on cold mornings and sip hot tea to warm you up.
I hope you will be blissfully and painfully aware of both the brevity of life and the length of it as well,
the breadth and the depth of it.
I hope you will embrace the light and the darkness that life brings.
I hope you will be able to endure life's inevitable pain and welcome the transformation it brings.
I hope you will use your life to serve others, to love others, and to become the wise, bright. strong, awake, engaged, contented, hopeful, joyful, courageous person you were created and born to be.
I hope you will recognize, accept, and bask in the love of God, the One who Loves you most of all.

Life is short. Life is painful. 
Life is beautiful. Life is good.
Live well, my friends.

You know that I love when I find confirmation and affirmation of my ramblings and rants. I found it on facebook.

1 comment:

Monee said...

I loved this post Gail. Struck a chord in me big time. Even brought a tear to my eye. Life is too short indeed...yet...