This was another toughie to slap an image on. Live! Is it a shiny, positive-thinking imperative? Or is it a reminder that existence is worth awareness? I live. You live. We live. Hey, we LIVE!
All the stock pictures went with door number 1. Standing atop mountains, trekking through jungle, contemplating suns on horizons, running through soft-focus wildflower meadows: they were all about manufactured YOLO moments.
I don’t know about you, but that isn’t my life. Most of my life isn’t about big, planned, designed-to-amaze events. It’s the adventure of the small. It isn’t about “seeing the bright side.” It’s about owning every minute of whatever life happens to dish up.
Life is what happens when we’re making other plans and all that. So I live it. All of it. The travels and the travails.
If I was queen of the world and issuing imperatives, the imperative live would be all about remembering to squeeze every drop of being out of whatever is happening right there, right then. Here’s me as Queen. “Hey, you there doing laundry. Again. You made clean clothes! Own that victory right there. Savor it. Right on!”
Or “Hey, you got your ass to work this morning even though you hate everything about it? Good on you, because your co-workers would have had it harder if you’d called out. You did a right thing, even if you only did it because you need money to eat. It still counts. Kudos.”
Yeah, sure, there’s the whole, “isn’t there more than this?” existential dilemma, and there’s the “pursue your dreams” mandate, and yes, we all should stretch for what we desire and ponder the big questions. But the now keeps happening while we do that.
So I don’t like to let any mundane second slip by as if it doesn’t matter. In the end those seconds may be all we ever have–and even if not, there are a hell of a lot more Small Moments than Big Times.
Well, that was a downer, huh?
Oh, the pic? That’s me. At Newport Beach, I think? A long time ago, when I was utterly, miserably, nauseously horrified by ocean surf. I couldn’t bear to swim or even wade out wearing a life jacket or do any of the exciting beach adventures my parents had planned for their three hatchlings. Parents pushed. I threw the world’s most hellacious meltdown and was banished to towel prison while my sibs adventured.
There I contentedly stared at sand grains and bits of shell until my sentence was served. Then I ran around at the ocean’s edge and caught water in my bucket and watched my toes disappear over and over in the tame, shallow wash of ebbing waves.
Very unexciting. But it was exactly what made me happy, and it’s my life.
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Image credit: copyright William Morris. All rights reserved.