Monday, May 5, 2014

One day you will die.

One day, you (yes, you! You reading this!) are going to die. It might be painless and quick and the right time to go, or it may be fucking horrible and slow and awful and unfair. Hell, it'll probably be a mixture of pretty much both. And whatever afterlife you believe in will be next up. But be you agnostic, Christian, Buddhist, and so or and so forth, we can all agree on one thing - when we die, the time we had on this earth is at a close. Granted, you may believe in reincarnation, and hey, awesome!, but even if that were the case, we would never be able to return to the here and now. This moment, this exact moment you're reading this, will never happen again.

You're born, you live, you die. And you move on (thanks LOST, you explain this much better than I could. If you aren't a LOST fan, well, man, that sucks because it's amazing). So your time is finite. It's sand through your fingertips. The best advice I've heard all boils down to this: feel and appreciate the grit of it before it's gone. Because it will be gone.

Camus was sorta right, because life is pretty absurd. So much suffering, so much death, and destruction and sadness, and dear God, I'll stop now, you get the point. I recently watched a Louis C.K. sketch and while it was supposed to be funny (it totally was in a horrible way), it really got me thinking. Here I am, with the LUXURY to be sitting comfortably in my parent's spacious house, drinking fancy beer (Oatis Oatmeal Stout for those wondering), and having the experience soon to travel the world. Cool, right? Well, as C.K. brought up, some people aren't blessed to have really anything. Some people's whole life consists of being born and dying. Like, that's it - born and then death by hunger. Makes you wonder: What was the point of that life?
Come on now, no matter what you believe, that sucks. 

A lot.

But here's the thing, I'm not God. And I certainly don't have cosmic answers and the last thing I could even argue with an ounce of intelligence is the age old struggle of why God lets suffering exist. That's not the point for me to figure out the whys, but figure out what to do about it.

Whatever the case may be, I have been given so many gifts. The gift of friends, and family, and people who love, support, and push me. I will die, but I have to make the best of the finite time I have and the gifts I've been given in this time. 
Gandalf says it best, in one of my favorite scenes (it's at the end of the clip):

I have renewed faith, that to be honest, has fallen slack over the years. In the day-to-day unfairness of life, watching family members die and my mom crumble again under the weight of her mental illnesses (as I type this, I'm watching her health crash again and we all fear the worst is coming back...) it almost gets to be all too much. And some days it is too much. But thank God I have people in my life to remind me that despite it all, life is gorgeous even in its ugliest moments. How beautiful and crazy it is that I'm breathing and living and dreaming and loving and FEELING - be it pain or sadness. Seeing death and sadness, and accepting it as part of the yin and yang of life, as strange as it sounds, can be refreshing. Thinking of life in this way - that it's always a breath away from ending - has had me re-evaluate my life and for that I am eternally thankful.

One day I'm sure I'll have my own kids and I can only hope they have a life as beautiful and tragic and wonderful and horrible and full as mine. And maybe that's what it's all about...carrying hope on down the line - a shared, collective consciousness that grows and evolves over time through your kids and loved ones. You only learn when something is lost or something is at stake, right? Maybe that's God's plan. Or maybe it's not. I don't know. But I do know this: I am loved.

I am loved and I'm so glad I am here. I exist. And as Helen Keller states, "life is "either a daring adventure, or nothing".

You will die. You will experience pain and beauty.

But that's the adventure of it all.
Take it all in and feel all the feels.
Welcome to life. It's one hell of a ride.