I wonder when I’ll stop expecting a call from Dad to say Happy Birthday because he has missed five of them now so you would think I would know better.
But even for a guy like me who knows things there is stuff that just happens because some people are imprinted upon you.
He probably would have read I Didn’t Die and then called me to ask why I insist on causing unnecessary trouble.
“You aggravate your mother with these posts and then I have to hear about it.”
Sometimes I’d push back and ask if she had to hear about it because I was aggravating him.
“Dad, I have been a father long enough to understand how that kind of talk from a kid can be painful.”
“So why do you do it.”
It was always part question, part comment.”
“Because sometimes I dance in the fire and sometimes I stick my hand on the pot to see how hot it burns. Because there is a part of me that must know the answers to some questions and that scientific method works.”
Who Do You Love
Touched upon some of this in one of the prior posts, don’t remember if it was the one just before the last or before that.
If you need to know you can go back and read it. Hell if you need to know more than my A1C dropped again, my thoughts about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness you can really dig in and read.
I am fired up about a bunch of stuff now and have been for a while. Maybe that fire will go away or maybe it will burn brighter. Maybe I’ll run around like Johnny Cash saying it burns, burns, burns.
What I am certain of is that when you ask yourself who do you love you dig in and go deep. You question what would happen if something took a person or persons away from your forever.
You ask yourself if you could watch their memory fade into the distance like a ship sailing out to sea or if you would scream and try to swim after them just because you needed more time.
That’s a conversation I have had with my children.
We have talked about going after what is important to us and not just giving up because things are hard or complicated.
We have talked about how to figure out when to give up and why you ought to do so sometimes.
But I suspect if you asked them they would say one piece of advice I have given is to “fight through it” and or to “figure it out.”
Life can be very hard. It can be very challenging.
But it can be very sweet and very rewarding and sometimes you don’t get to the sweet rewarding part without going through the other.
If nothing else you certainly don’t appreciate it as much.
That Is The Goal
That Emily Dickinson quote is something I push myself for. To say I tasted life over and over is always the goal.
It doesn’t require having to climb Mt. Everest, sail around the world and or visit every major art museum. Those are things that have their own merit and might be worth doing for lots of reasons, but tasting life doesn’t require superhuman efforts or winning a prize for intellectual things either.
The distinction is in recognizing those moments where you are doing something special with people that are important to you.
It is recognizing that sense of the ordinary becoming extraordinary for reasons you can’t always identify or explain.
They often don’t announce themselves or come when you might expect them, but they come and our job is to take advantage when they do arrive.
Sometimes when they do arrive we see them but fear to call attention to them because doing so might lead to uncomfortable conversations/circumstances.
I understand that too because there have been moments where I dared not move because I feared an outcome I couldn’t control more than I feared losing out on the positive outcome that lay on the other side.
But there are ample examples of my running straight towards the fire as fast as I could because I couldn’t stomach the alternative.
These are things I would ask my father about if he were here. These are conversations I would have liked to have had.
Would have loved to have engaged my uncle on it too because his thoughts would have been of interest. I would have liked to have had more time to speak with him as an adult.
But what we wish for doesn’t always happen and what we hope for doesn’t always happen either so we deal with what we have got.
Or to quote the Wilner men who came before me you have to play the hand you are dealt. Lot of truth in that even if I have tried to bend that hand to my will as best I could.
And So It Ends
There are better posts here. There are more interesting posts here. There are also worse posts here.
But for this particular circle around the sun this what I have to say in this particular place at this moment. I have had better birthdays and I have had worse.
They can’t all be horrible and they can’t all be great but if we work at it there are more good than bad and ample opportunities to push for another shot at grabbing that brass ring.
First, I had an appointment last week where my A1c was tested and I was at 6.0… which disappointed me because for the last 3 years it’s been 5.9 Still better than that 11.3 it was sitting at 8 years ago; ouch!
“I tasted life”; that can be taken more ways than one. Personally, I can say I’ve tasted life, but I’d have to add “and I didn’t like most of it”. It’s an interesting take because I realize that I haven’t enjoy most of my life; I lived it, I failed and succeeded in it, and I’m still here, but there’s not much joy in the memories. I need to work on that; maybe I need to switch from opera to disco for a while. lol
11.3? Yikes, well I have to agree that 6 is far better.
I have had moments where I have asked myself if most of my experiences are good and if I have really enjoyed my life.
The answer is the good has been pretty damn good and the bad, well some of it has been awful.
But overall it has been alright and the goal has been to focus on making adjustments so that there is more good than bad, more joy than sad.
Figure if we are going to be here, well..