Another decade down. Holy shit a lot has happened. The world has changed quite a bit. And the way I view the world has changed drastically.
In the last 10 years, my world has changed drastically. This time, 10 years ago, I was desperately trying to find a way to make a living before biting the bullet and filing for disability. In the intervening years, I swallowed my pride and accepted the inevitable. My “working” days are over. That was a rough adjustment. And it still eats at me. I’ve not given up completely. But I’ve come to accept my current situation, albeit begrudgingly.
10 years ago, I’d never had a surgery. I’ve had 4 since. Had my hip worked on, a lipoma removed from my bicep, a hernia repair, and my gallbladder removed. That last one was rough. I guess technically 5 surgeries. I sprung a leak and started bleeding into my abdominal cavity, so they had to open me back up to fix it.
A decade ago, I was estranged from my daughter. Not by my choice, or hers. But patience paid off. I now have a very good relationship with her. And I had the pleasure of watching her walk across the stage at her high school graduation.
I’ve become much more “brutal” when it comes to cutting out toxic people. I have to look out for me. Because nobody else is going to. Nobody else can. Life is too short for bitterness and drama. Wash your hands of it and move on. This applies to anyone. Even blood relatives.
Many friendships have come and gone. One that I considered to be one of the best friendships I’ve ever had just evaporated. One day he was there, the next he was just gone. Completely ghosted. But I’ll cherish the times we had together rather than lament the times we didn’t have.
I’ve tried to be more “zen” about shit. Bad things are going to happen. Hardships will happen. Life isn’t sunshine and puppy dogs. The measure of a person isn’t in how few hardships they endure. It is how they endure those hardships. It is OK to not be OK. It isn’t OK to stay that way. I can’t control the bad things. But I can control how they impact my life long term. Today may suck, but tomorrow will be better. Even if it is just by a fraction of a percent. And if tomorrow wont be better, is there something I can change to make it better?
That’s really what it is all about, isn’t it? Not all of the good things, or all of the bad things. Those are just peaks and valleys in the roller coaster of life. But how do they help you grow? Do they help you grow? Do you cling tightly to the safety rail wishing the ride would end? Or do you throw your hands up and embrace the ride?
Not everything has to be a major breakthrough. There isn’t always going to be a big “AHAH!!!” moment. But there is always something new to learn from life. Some small takeaway that can be used in the future. A day you don’t learn something new is a day you’ve wasted.
Here’s to another decade of learning from everything life throws at us!