Last Words

Anger is a cruel, boring slavemaster; action a thrilling, infinite hero.

Why be petty when I can be powerful? Grimace when I can be graceful? Beauty is inside.

Each day is the best of my life and may be my last.

So what?

I’m not guilting myself over a bucket list. No tidying up or giving back while there’s still time.

My bucket overflows and Death won’t ask if my bed was made or demand a count of my charities. Death don’t care.

Yeah, a radical mindset for a onetime priesthood aspirant, who genuflected and prostrated to a vision of death on the cross.

Jesus finally got through to me despite superstitious kundalini: My good mind and soul always has been enough.

A well-lived life means laughing at myself and with others. If eternity has any requirements—which it doesn’t—laughter is prime.

Ha ha ha! Last words.

“Find a Way”

The most amazing thing you can find is yourself.

I’m constantly obsessed with upping my game. Improving my score, strengthening my swing (Steven Pressfield). And I don’t even play sports! (Unless you count being a Nerd Jockey.) My FOMO (fear of missing out) escalated with the recent deaths of my dear brother and two best friends. What if I, like they, die in three months notice, or within hours of notice?

I want to be ready! Time’s awastin’.

I strew notes to self, while reading Elon Musk, Richard Branson, and Diana Nyad; not that I’m likely to become an astronaut or ocean swimmer, but these folks are so waaay out there. My greatest deathbed fear is that I’ve lived below my potential. As paralyzing as box jellyfish (just ask Diana).

Find a way! says Diana, who swam from Cuba to Florida at age 64, on her fifth attempt. In her teens as a competitive swimmer, she did 1000 sit-ups per day, training hard for eight years without a day off, while her coach was secretly molesting her. No excuses, this girl.

I’m really not going to change much and that’s knowing myself, not making excuses. I’m currently out of epiphanies, ahas, ravenous passions. Maybe I used up my quota.

I think Oprah and her posse are mistaken to preach, “find your passion/life purpose/calling”. It’s all marketing, book sales, cable TV and Tony Robbins seminars. (I used to be into the self-help human potential thang. Even Wayne Dyer died recently.)

I’ve answered a “priestly call” (in training I discerned not to enter the Episcopal church business), and at other times was “meant to be” a composer, traveler, wife and mother (miscarried and divorced), performer, humanitarian. I haven’t grasped there may be no such thing as calling lightly.

Except the calling to be myself, any given moment. Today is the best day of my life; as will tomorrow be, if tomorrow comes.

Found!

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I Will

I’m not a victim of fate, genes, or circumstances. I say this as one who has encountered some of the worst things a human can. Violence, betrayal, illness, loss.

At the same time, I’ve encountered the best in life: friends, deep love, opportunity.

These days I’m materially less successful than my youthful self thought I’d be by now. My choices evolved.

Recently, I’ve come to outlive all my next of kin. I really didn’t program that to happen until I was at least 80!

I’ve been wrong about many things; I’ve been foolish and critical. I think I still am and I consider it all good stuff. Being myself is the best I can be.

And as I’ve written before, People are the Thing. Recently within weeks, my favorite dog, and then a best friend, and then my brother who’d been given three months, all passed away. They transitioned. Law of threes? I don’t know. These things do seem to happen in clusters.

I find life futile and meaningless and consider lying down for a very long nap. But hey, I love experiments too, so why not stay awake and see what’s next on the play list?

OK, fine; I will.

Be the Reason

Someone close to me is suddenly dying of lung cancer. A cross-wearing acquaintance, when I told him I wouldn’t be socializing much, lectured, “There’s a reason” and after listening too long I blurted, “Yeah there’s a reason he has lung cancer and a reason my family died young: he smoked cigarettes 40-plus years as did the others.” Scoff! That was the response.

Oprah would advise, “There’s always a lesson.”

Get off the phone!

In Christian and Jewish Bibles, Job’s friends blamed him and insisted there was a reason for his tragedies and trials. Finally YHWH (God) got sick of listening to their lame blame game and pretty much said, “It is what it is so shut up!”

Do I sound angry? I hope so. But I don’t want more family and wealth than ever, like Job got at the end of his ordeal.

I just want the dead to come back and the dying to live, and to let you know that 87% of lung cancers are caused by smoking. I don’t have the stats for heart attacks and others but we all know anyway…be healthy, my friends. Be the reason.

My Brother is Dying

Sometimes those we love aren’t the best people and there’s nothing to be done for it, for them. We love them from afar, in our hearts, through the cosmos.

We smile at their sparkle in the stars and stare at their face in the clouds.

We weep to them in the wind, as if wind and love could ever be enough to change their ways.

We have no such power; only they do and it has been squandered on cigarettes and hard living. As we watch them begin to pass from earth we know who we are: we love despite odds and our beloved carries that love to their eternal adventure.