Archive for November, 2011

6 Promises

6 Promises I make to my unborn (nor conceived) child:

I promise to give you anything I can provide that will let you be healthy.

I promise when you’re ready to fly, that you will soar.

I promise our connection will be tested, and always pass.

I promise you will be able to fill your brain with whatever knowledge interests you.

I promise you will have the entirety of my life experiences, the lessons of which to interpret for yourself.

I promise there will always be enough love in every day for you to make it to the next.

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Just Connect

A dying man lay on his deathbed and asks to himself “What have i done with my life?”. This is the cumbersome, suffocating question many will ask.

What about at the beginning of life? What if we were able to, at our earliest moment that we could grasp such an abstraction, ask ourselves “What am I ‘going to do’ with my life?” What would the young, bright, stunningly enthusiastic you say about that?

I can’t imagine this would be as tough as being asked at Middle or High School age “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I’m a grown person in all respects. I’ve been working professionally for ten years, have two college degrees and yet still cannot answer this question. But I would think at the brink of one’s newfound internal monologue and minimal imaginative abilities one would process the general expectation that we’re going to grow up, do the things we see adults doing, and then eventually pass away from something yet unknown. Following suit of this most generalized life scheme I would expect the answer to this conceptual childhood question to also be broad, unbridled by limitations, and lacking overall detail. I would expect most of us in our youth would likely say something in response that sounded like “I want to make a difference.” or “I want to build something.”

I think from my most nascent state that my answer would have been that I want to connect with people. I have sought conveniently, circumstantially, though tirelessly, for connection in this life. Of all my blessings since the first breath of air taken, it’s the connections that I’ve had with the assortment of people I’ve had come into my circle at different lengths that have mattered most to me. It’s these connections that have been the most rewarding accomplishment during the run of my years, and it’s these connections that, whenever newly fastened, lift my soul and remind me what, to me at least, life is about.

Forster began his novel Howard’s End, an iron giant in the literary canon, with one simple two-word sentence; “Just Connect”. He couldn’t have drawn more attention to this philosophy if he had begun his work with a heavy paragraph that tried to convey the same notion. I won’t assume he and I would have subscribed to all the same convictions were we to have been alive at the same time, but I always remember those two words when reflecting on what is life’s most valuable accomplishment to me; connection.

What, or where, would you be if you thought about the way we want to spend our life at the earliest point in your life? What would I have done differently if I knew I would find such pleasure in connecting with people and spending my life seeing just how deep these connections might run when nurtured and cared for?

Variety is well-known as one of life’s most important factors, and only compliments what I enjoy from the connections I’ve made in this life. The assorted cast of characters within my circle vary greatly in features, history, ambitions, culture, interests, and practically every other category used to define an individual.

Variety only honors my concept of lively connections however. It’s the state of being that one finds oneself in when a connection is made. It’s not the camaraderie or mutual hobbies from which the pleasure is derived within these connections, but something deeper, mystical, genetic, preternatural is alive in that instance where you connect with another person. The nearly electrical synapse between two people’s minds where one identifies another as a mutually interested soul that feels a unique and custom bond reciprocated in equal magnitude from the corresponding spirit. Though most connections I value and truly cherish are cultivated rather than being instant, there are also moments like this that I’ll never forget.

Connections with people, whether fast and momentous, or slowly formed over time, are what makes some clocks in this world continue ticking. I feel I have only brushed the surface of my life and what connections mean to me, but I digress and again consider this entry’s introspection, “What am I going to do with this life?”

This is your moment. You’re in the spotlight.

What are you going to do with this life?

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