Maybe I’m entering a new stage of my life….

empty-university-lecture-hallWhen I was a kid – I was always absorbing, asking questions, and kind of going with the flow. Parents and teachers were guiding me, telling me where to go, how, and when. Once I entered high school, I had a taste of knowledge, and began the typical teenage pull away from authority, from parents, from teachers. I wanted to be independent – but still depended so much on all of these people for answers, for support, for… well… everything. Then university started – and my REAL taste for independence occurred. I got my first chance at staying away from home and making my own decisions: if I was going to class, if I was going to do a reading, what money I was going to spend, and where… I really beginning to get a grasp on adulthood.

Then adulthood began. My first thought was :This sucks! I want to be a kid again! Doesn’t just about everyone have that moment? In any case, I plowed headfirst into adulthood – doing the things that were expected of my: getting a job, finding a place to live, exploring relationships. My mid- to late-twenties was really an information gathering time for me. Once I hit thirty – it felt like all of that absorption (from day 1 to my 30th birthday, really) had finally all come together and started forming a picture.

Up until my early thirties, I didn’t really feel like I had a full and complete view of myself, of things around me, of life in general. Now, at 32, I am finally really seeing into myself for the first time. I have finally come to a place where I accept so many things from my  history.

Regrets are falling away like sandcastles into the tide – as I am realizing that they do not serve a purpose. My past has become a history of valuable learning experiences. It is no longer a place to bathe. The future is unknown to me – and I am still learning how to not play the “what if” game. I think after thirty-some-odd years of experience, I’m finally realizing what’s important: NOW, this moment!

I feel like I’m finally on the right path. Forgiveness is so much easier. Happiness is always close at hand. Sadness seems to crumble more quickly than I remember. Why? There’s so much less to worry about! The two mottoes that I have had for at least the past 8 or so years are finally really becoming crystal clear to me. They are both very simple, but usually one or the other helps to solve problems or puzzles I am facing.

One: Never Give Up! This motto should be taken with a grain of salt. There are some who might take this to the extreme and possibly apply it to projects or problems that might end up simply giving a negative ends. But it’s important in some places: never give up on loving those around you, never give up on forgiveness, never give up on yourself!

My tattoo: It says "Never give up"
My tattoo: It says "Never give up"

Two: No matter what, everything will work itself out. This motto, I have found, is always 100% true. No matter what you are going through, things will work themselves out (either you will work them out, or something will happen to help the process). You might go through some real crap in the interim, and feel some real pain (which usually equals REAL GROWTH), but in the end… that’s right… it’ll all work out!

I’m seriously considering adopting a new motto that I learned in my latest meditation experience: This too, will change.

What does that mean? you might ask. To paraphrase S.N. Goenka: No matter what you are facing – be it a pain in your hip, or the loss of a loved one – this will change (either the pain will pass, or you will!). It’s very difficult to keep this in perspective when you’re in the middle of suffering, but it helps to provide a light at the end of the tunnel. There’s always hope 😉

So here’s to an amazing 2011 – filled with love, compassion, opportunities, adventure, and a NEW and FANTASTIC stage of my life!

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