Have you ever noticed how life seems to flow between massive spurts of change and smooth sailing stalemate status? One minute you're bored with the status quo and the next it all comes together before your eyes. This week I saw the end of one life and the beginning of another.
I kissed my son on the cheek as I left him standing on the steps of his new home. "You've started a new chapter in your life today. A new life. I'm so proud of you." I drove away with a surreal sense of how quickly things change. I couldn't help but notice that the first thing he'd done was hang a hammock in the yard. So unlike his mother. But it made me smile. I hope this simple pleasure brings him -and his lady - joy and contentment.
No sooner had I settled in back at the Palace when the phone rang with news of another beginning. Someone I knew and greatly respected had passed on into eternity. Today at the funeral there was talk of family and memories, purpose and passion....how he defined himself through the space of 82 years. "What will people say about you when your time on earth is through?" asked the pastor. "Will you have made a difference? Will you have left your mark?" My friend certainly had. His zest for living and honest authenticity never left you wondering where you stood with him. Such a simple man in worldly terms but one who knew exactly who he was and stood in it.
The birth of each soul on earth and the return of each soul at the end of life are experiences common to us all...but "the dash" in the middle between those two points is what counts, said the preacher. Sure I want my life to count for something bigger than myself. Sure I want to make a difference, but must I dash? Does your passion and purpose have to be a race to the end? I wondered, as I sat there in my funeral clothes, if defining yourself and "trying" to make a mark is missing the mark, when really, living your true self is making a mark after all. At least that's the life I'm hoping for.
I think I'll keep doing what I do and being who I am...with one small change.
I need a little more of this.