Time Passes – Leave A Positive Legacy

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School picture from 1973 The artist as a young man (circa 1973)

This month is the anniversary of my birth. Part of our life cycle. Birth, living, then death. All simple, neat and tidy. Millions have done it before me and millions more will come after me. Why am I so special? What is my purpose? It may surprise you to know, I know the answer to those questions and I’m both thrilled and scared about it at the same time. Whenever my birthday comes around, I get this sick feeling of dread that I try to hide from my friends and family. (Oops! LOL) But I don’t want to ignore the date. We can celebrate growing old.

Someone, I can’t remember who, described life as a roller coaster. From birth to a certain point in life, we’re moving up and up like going up the big hill of a roller coaster. After that certain point it’s all down hill. I do feel like I have started that down hill trip. Or I’ve flipped over the hour glass and the grains of time are slipping slowly to the other side. Whichever sad depressing metaphor works for you.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not depressed or sad that the end of my life cycle is in sight. It does make me reflect where I’ve come in my life and what I’ve done, the choices I made to get here, and to consider if I made any huge mistakes. In life, there are no do-overs.

And no, I don’t consider liking Disco in the 70’s a mistake…

I worry that I have, and continue to make, choices based on comfort level rather than ambition. I feel I’m ambitious but I guess I don’t want to take the risks needed to achieve them. I admit I have avoided risk in the past. I don’t like the lack of control and rejection, real or imagined, makes me sad. I know many of my friends thrive on risk but I’ve never been like that. I want things planned out and little to no personal surprises.

But we all know, real life isn’t perfect. The choices we make today create ripples that grow into our future.

We have no real purpose beyond reproduction (to continue the species) but other than that single biological imperative, we humans are not special nor do we have a special place in the world. We are all masters in what we do and become. It’s entirely up to us.

There can be unforeseen obstacles in our path but none of it is predetermined.

So why do I get up every morning?

I get up every morning simply to enjoy the adventure of life. Learning about new things, relating to other people, and making some challenging choices are part of my adventures in living. I once worked as a call center representative and the best part of the job was each call was different. That is how I think as go from day to day – each one has the potential to be different from the previous day.

I know it sounds like a contradiction since I said I like little to no personal surprises and you have now been introduced to my world. HA!

For fun, I like to read about history and the people who lived in the past. While I can never know what these people were like in their day to day living, we do know their legacy, positive or negative, on the world.

It’s my goal to leave a positive legacy on this world for the people who come after me and to keep my hands inside the roller coaster we call life.

Bonus

Here are some appropriate lyrics of a song I like by Al Stewart titled “Time Passages”:

Well, the picture is changing
Now you’re part of a crowd
They’re laughing at something
And the music’s loud
A gal comes towards you
You once used to know
You reach out your hand
But you’re all alone
In these time passages
I know you’re in there
You’re just out of sight
Oh, time passages
Buy me a ticket on the last train home tonight

Al Stewart – Time Passages (1978)


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