now only lasts for one second.

before i begin, i feel like i need to say something about the last post. i realize that it may have seemed like i actually saw this kid doing something disgusting. i really didn’t. i just saw him peering out of the door.  should i have realized what was going on? probably. but you have to understand that when i am working out, i am thinking about maybe five things, all somehow related to keeping my feet moving and my ipod on.  i don’t contemplate the cosmos or really even think about life. i get into a mindless zone, and it’s lovely.  so…should i have immediately figured out what was going on? probably.  but i didn’t.  and, to be fair, maybe that kid thought i did see. and if he did…then i can sort of understand his surprise.  because wouldn’t you be surprised if somebody was okay with that?  

yeah me too.

now…on to other things.

time.

it’s moving faster lately. 

i don’t know if you’ve noticed.  sometimes i have moments when i stop and wonder:  what have i done with the last million minutes of my life? it seems so grand, that number, doesn’t it?  but it’s not. it’s just about two years.  so where were you ’round about this time two years ago?  who were you?  what were your goals?

did you let life happen to you or did you do something about it?

i feel like today’s lesson, in more ways that one, was about making things happen, not waiting for them to happen.  today in church we talked about such things–about the fact that you don’t change because an event happens.  nobody walks out of their wedding, for example, a completely different person.  do you adapt to circumstances? sure.  but if you want to be a different kind of person, nothing’s going to do that for you except effort on your part.

no quick fixes here in the real world.  sort of sucks, doesn’t it?

but then again it doesn’t, because when you do take your life in your hands and make something out of it, when you have those moments when you realize that SWEET MOSES WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE SUMMER AND WHAT DO I HAVE TO SHOW FOR IT?, you can look around and count.

oh.  i did that.

oh. i became that.

oh. i finished that.

oh.  i conquered that.

oh. that weakness is now a strength.

or you can have tiny moments when you realize that, despite what you thought you’d do or what you most certainly would have done before, you’re making decisions that reflect how different you really are. 

those are cool.

i’ve sort of had encounters with people who aren’t doing this over the past week or so–people who react rather than act.  i worry about them. life is hard.  life is long–too long to worry about the stuff that doesn’t matter–and short–too short to wait around for it to come to you and deliver, in a wrapped package, all of the things that you want to do and be.  those are both true, though they may seem contradictory.  and i worry about people who seem to be waiting around for their life to take flight.

i have learned a few things in my years of hard knocks.  life has been good and kind to me, for sure, but it has polished and refined me something fierce.  what are you waiting for?, i want to ask to those people.

to be brave? you can only gain courage by taking scary steps.

to be strong? you can only be strong by admitting you’re weak or frightened and still stepping further than you think you can.

to endure? you can only endure by moving forward. endurance is not a standing still sport.

to be happy?  happiness is never going to just find you and hang out perpetually. happiness is a condition created by everyday action. 

for people to respect you?  stand up for yourself with respect for them.  say what you mean.  move forward with confidence.  

i wish, so much, that people could just learn from what i’ve been through.  i had a conversation tonight about this with someone who reminds me very much of myself a few years ago.  and i just so desperately, desperately, desperately want to save her from the hard stuff. i want her to stand up for herself, to make choices with confidence, to stop waiting.  it doesn’t work that way, i know.  i think i must now feel a wee bit of what my mom felt when she would plead with me to learn from her mistakes and make my own instead of just repeating hers again and again.  

so what have i learned from all of this? action is my apparently default problem-solving mechanism and my battle plan for life.

when something tough is presented to me, i do something. it may have nothing whatsoever to do with that problem right there in front of me, but it’s got something to do with something, and i’m moving. i can’t stand still. and eventually, to allude to a really cool quote that’s truer than i think people realize, i live my way into the answers to all of my questions.  

eventually.

but i’ll be living and moving and trying and failing and growing and changing in the meantime.  

and in the last million minutes, i like where that road has taken me.

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2 Responses to “now only lasts for one second.”

  1. 2 years ago I was saying goodbye to you! That was hard to leave familiarity and jump into a new life. New people. New job. New place to live. New roommates. New everything. Life is change. Life is adjustment. Life is learning. Life is growing. Life is decisions. We love and hate all of those things. Thanks for being the amazing you.

  2. I really liked this post for a lot of reasons. It’s always good to be able to sit back and see how far you’ve come.

    I also know what you mean about time, there’s a great section in Goodbye, Darkness where some young marines are sitting around at night talking about how time moves in waves, and while at the time things seemed to be going very slowly, soon they would be “living very fast.” I like the thought.

    Hope you had a good weekend!

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