15 Jul Change, Friendship & Living Life to the Fullest
There’s a sense of familiarity to every experience, regardless of where we are. Who we are remains — our body, our spirit, whether we choose to embrace it, is home.
Yet with every passing day, with the ebb and flow of seasons, we change.
Future experiences which once allured us, hazy and unknown and all the more exciting, fade into our memories. But they aren’t gone — not completely.
These experiences become impressed into our being, our soul; we live and we learn, repeatedly experiencing life in waves of doing and being — the paths of our existence which lead to our becoming.
Becoming is what each day contributes to: the actions we take, the words we read, the voice we share and the mentality we cultivate.
Becoming is whatever it is we hope to be.
But how do we know? How can we determine what matters in life, what we should strive for, where we should aim?
“The ordinary growth of mind,” writes Ralph Waldo Emerson in his journals, “especially till the old age of man, depends on aliment procured from without. But this aliment for which we search the bosoms of other men, or their books, or the face of external nature, will be got in larger or less amounts according to circumstances quite as often without as within our control.”
If searching the bosoms of other men caught your attention, come back to me.
Much of our becoming is out of our control. We react to life and its complexities, sometimes in ways that feel genuine, and at other times we react, look back and think, that wasn’t me.
Yet that is how we change; that is how we learn.
From discerning what feels like us; what we want to use to construct our character, and what we want to leave behind.
From the depths of my being, I know who I am. I have my faults; I make my mistakes; I’m human.
It’s all part of the learning process.
And even though I question whether I made the right decision, or I get down on myself and wish that I’d done better — I feel, at least, alive.
I feel something real.
Emerson says: “I am sure of this, that by going much alone a man will get more of a noble courage in thought and word than from all the wisdom that is in books.”
Much of life we must tackle on our own. Yet I’d be nothing without the people in my life.
My parents, my family, who keep me grounded and smiling. I really, truly, hope to appreciate all they do for me.
What are we without our friends?
The people we choose to journey with, to celebrate and suffer alongside. There’s integral trust amongst friends, true friends, in it together.
True friends are hard to come by; but I believe it starts by being a friend. What could be more important in a world where we create our own meaning?
To alleviate another’s suffering. To bring joy into another’s heart. To share in this experience — this wild, strange, wonderful experience:
“I have learned,” said the poet Walt Whitman, “that to be with those I like is enough.”
Being with a friend in the heat and cold is very often better than being alone with all the comforts in the world.
The beauty of friendship is changing together, individuals seeking what’s true, important, beautiful in life.
Facing the world — one as confusing as ours — together. Even when apart.
Times are changing; but the decision remains to make this journey a playful one. A colorful one.
One that through the changing seasons, the peaks and valleys and darkness and light, encompasses the full breadth of life.
This is for y’all.
Let’s live to the fullest.