Monday, June 16, 2008

Happy Belated Father's Day

I am reposting one of my favorite blog entries: This Is Your Time On Earth.
Yesterday's blog, you may have seen, was written by my first Guest Blogger. I hope you read and enjoy my friend Eric's thoughtful post, reflecting on the life and sudden passing of Tim Russert. When someone we love dies, it is always a painful occasion, but when they leave us much too soon, it becomes tragic, all the more difficult to understand and digest. Tim was only fifty-eight; he had a lot of life left to live. My father died at around the same age. It's so ironic that Mr. Russert's death occurred during the weekend when we all take time to think about and honor the man who means the world to most of us.

Every Father's Day weekend is a difficult time for me. I miss my dad every day, and he has been gone now for close to twenty years, as hard as that is for me to fathom. But one thing I have learned over those years is that while life all too often is filled with challenges and hardship, devastation and, sadly, death, we must find within us the will and passion and determination to live each day to its fullest. Every day, no matter what. Every day, as if it could be our last. That is the gist of this post. Please enjoy:

This Is Your Time On Earth

How much time do any of us have? Time on earth? Eight decades, if we're lucky, maybe nine? When you're in your twenties, eighty or ninety years of life seems like a lot of time, doesn't it? And it is, I guess, from a twenty-something's point of view. How about for folks like myself, in their early 50's? Eighty years looks a bit less large. In fact, it looks like a number that is fast approaching and too close to just around the corner.

No matter your age or how eighty or ninety years looks to you in the scheme of things, the purpose of this blog entry (and the attached video, for those who prefer watching and listening versus reading) is to emphasize the importance of time. More to the point: our time on earth. Because no matter if you live to 100 or leave this rock way too early, the thing that will shape your days while alive, as well as fill those days with purpose and meaning, is what you do along the way. What you do each and every day.

Life is precious. Like is boring. Life is amazing. Life is difficult. Life is fun. Life is horrible. Life is happy. Life is sad. Life is the most beautiful thing in the world. life. There are things that occur every second in this world that make us cringe, shake our heads, cry, and wonder how this could possibly be happening. And yet during that same day, if we are lucky, life will show us how utterly wonderful it is: a cute puppy, a random act of kindness or heroism, a stunning sunset, the love of another human being. My point is this: no matter what life is handing you or how the problems of the world make you feel, you have an obligation to yourself, to the rest of the six billion souls who inhabit this planet. You have to try. Work hard. Strive to be the best you can be. Be kind, caring, considerate. Work to right wrongs, help others, set a good example. But mostly, you have to make YOUR LIFE as complete and fulfilling as possible. By doing all that YOU can to make a difference, to leave a positive mark, to grow and learn and take personal accountability for your actions, to balance your mind, body, and spirit, you are taking care of self. And if everyone did just that--made themselves the best person possible--the world would be that much better a place. Now I'm not saying all that is wrong with this world will suddenly be right, but a lot of it will be. Think about it.

But remember, be it ten years or one hundred, this is YOUR time on earth. And what I feel when I think about that is this: I do not want to waste it. I will not allow anyone or anything to stand in the way of all I want to do during my time here. I embrace this time on earth because it is MY time; as it is YOUR time. And as for me, I want to leave a mark, a legacy, a positive impact. Make my eight or nine, hopefully, ten decades the best they can be. And when I close my eyes at night and it's just me and my higher power, I want to be able to say that I worked hard every day, tried to make a difference, helped others as best I could, and lived my life during my time here on earth to its fullest. And I want you to be able to do the same.




Eric S. said...

Thank you, that is indeed a powerful post. We shape everyone around us by how we deal with those thoughts, emotions and feeling that are life. Good, bad, happy, and sad, all feelings and emotions that make us what we are.

I'm sorry to hear that 20 years makes it no easier, that means I have a long way to go. Thanks again

Anonymous said...

I couldn't say it better if I tried. I have a two year old and this one was pretty special. Great post and thanks for it too.

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Brian said...

Thanks Mike - special comments for a special day... nice one.