Three Sixty Five
I spoke to my mom this morning. There is no person in my life more faithful in making sure she honors events like birthday’s. Today is mine. Fifty-seven trips around the sun! For those who knew me “back in the day” that is far more than anyone thought possible.
My trip, like most, has been marked by spectacular beauty and intense pain. There are moments of great sorrow and then joy beyond expression. There have been wonderful accomplishments and abject failure. There has also been many periods of just plain old life complete with traffic, lines at the store, taxes and the simple “stuff” of life (note: it’s part of the journey too).
As I reflect on my life, so much has changed. Mostly, I have changed. This past year has seen a more mindful Kirk. This past year has seen a Kirk more comfortable in his own skin. The season has been very reflective. It has seen its bit of pain, change, transition, lost connections, etc. And life has shown great wonder, opportunity and beauty.
Life clicks on… until it doesn’t. We don’t really know when we write our last chapter in our story. I find it hard to imagine, though my body reminds me often, that I am “middle age.” Middle age implies that there is another half or so to go. But there’s not. Not for sure and not with any guarantee of the same life we have known in qualitative terms.
Depressed yet? Please don’t be. This journey is amazing. It is a journey of self-discovery. It is supposed to be anyway. The awareness of the brevity of life is intended to encourage. We are here for a blink. This truth has been true for all time. Accept it. In fact, own it. For me, this past year has been steps towards owning that more completely. THAT alone has made it a very good year. I’m getting good at “getting” me. I know myself better, more completely and honestly. I am flawed. I am amazing. I have limits. I can do anything.
There are some beautiful gifts given on birthdays. There are some pretty lame gifts too. The best gift is the one you give to yourself of a life of meaning and purpose. If you think you have waited too long, good news; you’re wrong! But life is moving fast so don’t wait.
Start today. Slow life down. Take time to breathe. Literally, stop and focus on your breathing. Take time to sit and think. Take time to journal the thoughts produced from a few moments of reflection. It doesn’t require a year in the desert. Just set aside 30 minutes each new day to think and feel and chronicle your journey. I bet life slows down. I am certain you will have a renewed perspective and your ability to see your path and map your journey forward will be enhanced.
Thegreat prophet, Ferris Bueller once said:
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.”
I hope you cannot be damned for taking liberties with a great prophet, but my modification goes like this:
“Life moves pretty fast (and it picks up speed as you go). If you don’t stop and look inside yourself once in a while, you will miss the most important part.”