Some words borrowed from The Who.
That’s really dating me, I’m afraid.
I can just imagine some younger readers going The Who who?
But, I won’t be going there. This is not a post about old rock and roll bands.
This is a post about old me.
Although, really, I’m not old.
But, man! Was I ever starting to act like I was!
For a couple of years now I’ve been kind of free-wheeling in place, not really knowing what I was doing or where I was going.
Over the past 6 months or so I’ve really been doing some stock-taking, some re-evaluation, some soul-searching, some trying to figure out what the hell I’m going to do with what’s left of my life.
And, I’ve decided I need to get back.
Back to a place inside myself where creativity once reigned supreme.
I used to pride myself on my ability to creatively problem solve. If we didn’t have the money for something (which was quite often) I could usually come up with some way to find it. I thought outside the box. It was normal.
As time progressed and money became less of an issue I began to find it easier to just buy whatever it was I/we needed.
Well, maybe a little. Because, I always look to get the absolute best deal I possibly can — and that can require some small measure of creativity.
There’s another word for that, I know. Cheap. I prefer frugal.
It sounds more creative.
However, I need to get back to what I was saying. About getting back. Getting back to a part of myself that I’d abandoned.
About a week ago I was talking with a friend and she mentioned how she sees herself doing something entirely different from what she is currently doing.
She envisions herself as being a motivator. Talking to others, giving them inspiration.
And I know, that if anyone can do this, my friend can. She inspires me.
And, after I got off the phone I started thinking: where do I see myself in 20 years time?
Sitting in front of a TV? With knitting or crocheting? Waiting for a phone call from my son or my grandchildren? Waiting for the community senior’s bus to pick me up so I can go play cards or do a jigsaw puzzle?
I was horrified. This is not what I had ever imagined for myself.
No, the future I had imagined long ago, in the time before marriage and children and grandchildren was something entirely different.
I saw myself as an adventurer, a photographer, a writer. I saw myself as living in a place that nurtured me and inspired me and fed me.
Somewhere along the way that vision was altered.
And, not for one minute do I regret the alteration.
I have had a wonderful life up to this point.
Marriage, family, grandchildren, love in abundance.
A beautiful home, a great job, money to pay my bills and afford a few luxuries.
But, now, as time seems to slip and slide around me and I become daily more aware of the preciousness of it, I’m beginning to wonder.
Shouldn’t I be doing more with my life? Shouldn’t I be trying to live as creatively and beautifully as I possibly can in the years left before me?
Because, really, how many are there left?
As my favorite sister and brother-in-law pointed out to us this weekend it could all end in a moment.
You could step into the shower feeling strong and healthy and then, as you step out, have your heart falter and fail.
All chances to live better, live to your potential, live with creativity– gone.
And how you are going to be remembered is who you were when you stepped into that shower.
Maybe you wanted to be someone different. Someone who ran marathons. Someone who wrote poetry and read it aloud in small coffee shops. Someone who painted. Someone who took singing lessons. Or swimming lessons. Or bungee jumped. Or sailed around the world.
We all have dreams. We all dream that we can do and be so much more than who we really are.
Very few of us ever actually pursue those dreams.
Because doing that takes conviction and creativity.
And being creative takes work. It means always thinking beyond what’s obvious.
It means being willing to take a chance.
It means choosing the road less travelled, risking failure, forsaking ‘normal’.
I don’t know yet what it is exactly I’m going to do, but I do know it’s going to be something great.
I don’t mean great as in President of the United States great (I am Canadian, after all). I mean great in that it will make me feel great, make me feel as though each day I live has meaning and purpose.
It’s going to be fun and I’m going to do it with joyful abandon.
I’m going to get creative.
I’m going to inspire the people I love most in this life to live their lives the same way.
To their fullest, most creative potential.
That’s something I wouldn’t mind being remembered for.