Sunday, June 19, 2016

"Live well, Love much, Laugh often"

While working in my studio a couple days ago, beautiful music playing on Pandora, I experienced a sudden epiphany! In a flash, out of the blue, it occurred to me that I am in all probability approximately 3/4 of the way through my life. Which means, in all probability I have approximately 1/4 of my life left to live,  a conclusion I have reached because my mother is nearly 97 years old and shows no sign of failing anytime soon.

Reaizing  that I may well have 25 years or so left, it occurs to me that I should figure out how I want to spend it. It is enough time to accomplish a great deal, too much time to just fritter away, not enough time to waste.

So, my first thoughts wax  philosophical. "Live well, Love much, Laugh often". To me, living well means enjoying the fruits of our labors, being good stewards of our physical belongings and finances,  staying in the moment, enjoying the company of our friends and family, and taking good care of my personal health. Loving  much means giving my heart fully to those close to me, embracing the natural beauty that surrounds me, and filling myself with experiences that beautify and intensify the human spirit. Laughing often means surrounding myself with positive people and experiences. Casting off and leaving behind the negativity and criticisms that can easily surface when faced with adversity in ideas, politics, news casts.

In this frenzy of thought, I feel as if I've experienced a sort of re-birth. I'm new again looking forward to whatever wonders and pleasures the future will bring. I feel ready to step up and out, to try new experiences, take a few (small) risks by stepping out of my comfort zone and meeting some new challenges.

When we baptize or dedicate a new baby, we as a community pledge to look after that child physically, and spiritually and to help her grow into a loving, kind, knowledgeable person who will be capable of reaching her full potential. I am asking my community- my family, my tribe- to help me  as I take my first steps into the next quarter - plus or minus- of my life.

If I am frowning, remind me to smile.
If you love me, tell me so- and allow me to tell you that I love you.
Invite me to participate with you in cultural activities which enhance and beautify the human spirit.
Allow me to help you when you need it- and remind me to allow you to help me, too.
Remind me to engage only in positive conversation about anything- people, places and things- to cast off negative thoughts and words.

I believe there is hope for me-
  • Grandma Moses didn't pick up a paint brush until she was 76 because she could no longer hold an embroidery needle due to her crippling from arthritis.
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder published a book at 73.
  • Julia Childs first appeared on TV at 51- and worked until her death in her 90's. 
  • Potter Beatrice Wood died at 105 and was in her ceramic studio producing work (with help, of course) until a very short time before her death. She didn't even become known for her pottery until she was in her 70's.
  • And Hillary Clinton is 69!

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