T minus 48 hours

Live is getting very intense. And there is so much going through my head right now. And believe it or not, not all of it is about me and my surgery. Well, it is all kind of connected. My surgery makes me think about the journey I have been on, which makes me think about all of the changes I have gone through, which makes me think about so much more.

Adventure – That word usually conjures up images of trips into the jungle or long road trips to distant places. For sure those are adventures and I wouldn’t mind having some of those. But right now I am on an adventure that to me is so much more than any place you could go in a car or plane or boat. My adventure is me. Discovering the person I locked in the closet decades ago is I think the most profound experience I have ever had.

But isn’t that true for all of us if we will take the time to know ourselves? Some have done that their whole lives. But so many seem so busy doing the “important” things that they never take out time to connect with themselves. I have to admit, years past, that was me. I was so busy I never really connected with myself, or maybe I was really busy because I knew what I would find and I wasn’t ready to accept that yet.

So maybe connecting with ourselves requires being in the right place in our life. I so very much hope you have that opportunity. To have a place in your life where you can put the world to the side and connect with yourself. Maybe like me you will find some amazing things. Or maybe you will just confirm what you always knew. Either way connecting is so worth it.

Famous – When we think of famous people we think of athletes and actors and billionaires and such. But only for what they did; winning races or Grammies or making more money than anyone else. For sure some of these people deserve credit for their accomplishments but we are making so much noise about something that is so brief. In a moment someone else will have set a new record, gotten the next award, or just have a few more bucks.

Yet millions every day touch lives. They say a caring word to someone in need of sympathy. They give a helping hand to someone who is struggling. They shed a tear in harmony with someone else’s pain. Are not these action so much more worthy of our acclaim? They touch the infinite. They heal souls. They give.

Magnificent – That word is commonly used in reference to great things people have made. We laud the new tallest building. We marvel at long bridges and dams. As an architectural enthusiast I have done so many times, and will no doubt do so again. But isn’t the most magnificent thing we could ever do, or marvel at, being part of the society’s growing up?

We only have to go back a few hundred years and slavery is as common as a Starbucks. And while it is not all gone yet, we have grown so much here. We, as a society, have gone from the common person accepting the subjugation of another person, to it being considered a crime. We still have a long way to grow here, but we are moving in the right direction.

Things like poverty, once just accepted as a reality, are now seen as a problem to solve. In so many ways we are growing up. We are very slowly becoming the kind of people we were meant to be. Not savage animals that simply look out for themselves, but truly civilized, caring for everyone.

Some see things as hopeless. There are certainly times when things look dark, progress is not a straight line. But I do see progress. I think when we look over history we have made a lot of progress. But like any improvement, there is always the temptation to slip backward. Anyone who has ever tried to lose weight or start an exercise routine knows that. There will always be the days when a double fudge Sunday just looks too good, or that extra hour of sleep wins out over the morning workout. But improvements are not measured moment by moment, they are measured over the long haul.

I would like to end with one bit of common advice, don’t focus on what you didn’t do, or could have done better, applaud yourself for what you did do. Even if it is as little as not getting that third helping that looks so good, or not making that nasty comment that came to mind. Because we can not leap a thousand miles, but we can take that next step. And every step counts toward the goal.