What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
This wonderful line is taken from Mary Oliver’s “The Summer Day.” The idea that my life is both wild and precious has been on my mind recently. I turned 50 last October. A sobering age to be sure. Around half of my life is over and maybe another half is left – or maybe not.
It’s a strange experience to travel through time and yet not feel like that much time has passed. My 73 year old mother says she still feels quite young and is surprised to see the wrinkled reflection of herself in the mirror… “I’m old!” she exclaims. Her older sister has Alzheimer’s and is blissfully unaware of this phenomenon… but also is unaware of who her sister is and is even losing memory of her dear late husband. It’s a trade-off, this awareness.
Mary Oliver asks, “Doesn’t everything die and too soon?” – and I suppose that even if you live to 95, it’s all too soon. Most of our days are filled with the business of keeping our selves and our families together – doing the laundry, making dinner, washing up afterwards, commuting to work, etc. Rarely do we find that moment to stop and bask in the fact that we are here… that we are alive… and that it is enough.
And let’s face it – basking in the moment is not a full-time job. It only happens in those moments, whether planned or serendipitous, when we look into our daughter’s eyes and see the miracle that she is, when we walk down to the store and sense, for a brief instance, that we are one with the earth below and the sky above, when we feel for the 532nd time the wonder of our beloved’s love for us. And hope there’s a 533rd time, too.
Those are the moments that allow the rest of our dailiness to be part and parcel of our wild and precious lives.
One of my plans is to write in this blog, to share myself and my thoughts, some of my history, and let you in on it. I’ll share more of my plans as I along, too.
So tell me… what is it you plan on doing with your one wild and precious life?