“You need to experience as much as you can in life to figure out what your life is meant to be.”–Smartygirl41
I read this line on Ms. Smartygirl41’s blog and told her I was going to steal it for a post (she gave me permission thank you very much). I am, by nature, not the most adventuresome person in the world. Now with that statement I must define what I believe an adventuresome person is; someone who jumps out of a perfectly good airplane, hanging by your fingernails on the side of a sheer mountain when your toes can’t touch the ground, or traveling to India with just a toothbrush and a clean pair of underwear. I will do none of these so hence I do not consider myself an adventurous person.
But what I have done, what adventures I have been on that could be considered just as frightening, I got married and have stayed married for 30 plus years. Became a father and lived to tell about it, and pay for it. Started a business and paid employees instead of paying myself. Wrote a book, like everyone says they are going to do, that was rejected by every agent and publisher I submitted it too. And through all that I still get up every morning and try again.
Ms. Smartygirl41 is right “You need to experience as much as you can in life to figure out what your life is meant to be”. But for me, these experiences must be manageable and realistic. I think this is where people get in trouble and why I hate The Facebook so much. After dinner when my wife and I have settled into our spots in the den to wind the day down with a little television she begins what I call her “Facebook crawl”. My often used term when she feels the need to share that so and so is on some exotic cruise, or so and so is traveling in Russia is “I don’t care”. If they are hurt, sick or dead I want to know that but what they are eating, what wild trips they have taken, or that their son was named third runner-up at the T-ball home run derby gets an “I don’t care” from the peanut gallery which, given that we are empty nesters, consist of just me and the cat.
To many people gauge their life and their experiences on the lives of other people and celebrities. Don’t believe me, do you honestly think the Kardashian franchise could have survived beyond one episode twenty years ago without the advent of social media? I don’t know what the show is about but apparently 1.3 million of you 18-34 year olds out there understand it. God bless you and Kim and Kanye thank you.
Finding out what your life is meant to be is also about finding those experiences that fit with your personality. As I have gotten older I find that I spend more time managing expectations, setting limits and being realistic. This is not to say that I don’t push myself beyond my limits, but, as an example, rather than hurling down a mountain on my bicycle at 40 mph as I did 10 years ago, now I go 30 mph. If I fall or crash it will still hurt and I will leave a big smudge on the asphalt and myself but that extra 10 mph doesn’t make the experience any less real or terrifying it just makes me feel better about the experience.
Live your life, live your adventure. You might be surprised that just waking up, brushing your teeth, walking out your front door and facing the univerese is the bravest thing you or anyone else, even Kim Kardashian, has to do to find your place, your purpose in this world.