Calling b.s. on “Live each day as if it were your last”

Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius is credited with the quote “Live each day as if it were your last”.

While many may believe this is a powerful, inspirational, motivating quote, for me at least it’s bullshit.

If I personally were to take this literally, my last day on earth would include the following:

As I would only have 24 hours to work with which doesn’t allow enough time to get on a flight to Minnesota, Wisconsin, or anywhere for that matter, I would call or video chat everyone I love to tell them goodbye. It would be terribly emotional and heart wrenching.

Once I collected myself from that activity, I would proceed to consume the following food and drink (in no particular order) : french fries, gourmet chocolate cake, lasagna, pizza, twizzlers, red wine, hot fudge sundae, chicken quesadillas, cheesecake, craft beer, warm chocolate chip cookies, Starbucks coffee, and cinnamon rolls.

Then after thoroughly puking my guts out, I’d listen to my favorite music. Picking artists and songs and listening to them would take up quite a large part of whatever is left of my last day on earth. However, the music would give me energy to press on to more important activities. Like spending time outdoors with my other half/best friend/best hubby ever. And then of course, a little hanky panky would be in order.

I would then proceed to spend time furiously writing checks to all of my favorite charities along with my two spectacularly wonderful adult children.

At that point, I would be ready to engage in having some fun and laughing so hard I’d be peeing my pants, such as watching favorite SNL clips from years gone by or random YouTube videos of toddlers, puppies, kittens, and goats doing hilariously adorable things on camera. That would then prompt me to seek out the nearest neighborhood dogs and small children so I could pet and interact with them (okay, maybe I wouldn’t actually pet the small children, that’d be wacko).

I would cap off my last day on earth with singing songs with or to Christopher (my beautiful grandson who turns 3 today) via video chat.

Then I would call it a day and presumably croke.

However, I would quite likely wake up the next  morning (okay noon, but let’s be real here, yesterday was jam freaking packed!). So would begin another “last day on earth”.  Oh the anxiety!! Good Lord!

So….this is my alternative to “live every day as if it is your last”:

Love as if every day is your last”

As in…..as much as humanly possible:

Be kind to everyone you come into contact with.

Bake something yummy to share with friends/neighbors/co-workers.

Tell those you love what you love about them.

Give something you have (something you really love) to someone who needs it more than you.

Pass on favorite books, movies, or music to someone you know will treasure them as much as you do.

Smile and say “Hi” to strangers

Be radically hospitable to visitors to your home.

Pet stranger’s dogs

Lift up the good deeds others are doing.

I, for one, prefer to love as it if was my last day as an earthly being. Living “as if” it was my last day is far too exhausting. To me, loving every day as if it was your last is better than living as if it was.

 

 

Deep Thoughts about Turning 50 (in list form-I love making lists!)

  1. 20170131_185008-1Holy crap!! I’m 50?!
  2. Fun fact: Sometimes I pee a little when I sneeze really hard now.
  3. Reading glasses are now a permanent part of my daily ensemble.
  4. Wearing sweatpants in public is now completely acceptable to me.
  5. As a married woman with a not too shabby sex life, I no longer have to be worried about becoming pregnant (‘course that ship sailed long ago..but still, it’s a pretty cool perk).
  6. I now think before I eat so I make better food choices than I used to. With the exception of the piece of gourmet chocolate birthday cake which was  most certainly bigger than my head (and possibly my ass, combined) when I thought “I’m going to eat this whole thing because, well, it’s my birthday-duh!”)
  7. Regular massages are simply. The. Best. Thing. Ever. (well, except for gourmet chocolate birthday cake).
  8. I’m cool with being a grandma now. Way more fun than being a parent for sure! As my mother in law has said “if I had known how much fun being a grandparent was, I would have done that first!” Not like that makes any real sense of course, but you get the gist.
  9. I have way more to write about at age 50, than let’s say, aged 27 and 3/4.
  10. I’ve got less time to waste (which can be anxiety producing or motivating as hell, depending on my mood that day).

It’s all about perspective, right people?

Ch ch ch Changes….

I believe that change is a constant. It can be your BFF or your enemy. The choice is up to you.

Change can be exciting, scary, heart-wrenching, excruciatingly painful, uplifting, and, without doubt, stress inducing.But, for better (or for worse), IT’S GONNA HAPPEN. Nothing you can do about it.

You see, my life has changed in some pretty significant ways in the last few years.
The first and perhaps biggest change happened one fall evening while dining out with my oldest daughter (who was 21 at the time) and her then-boyfriend. Amanda called me to say she had some news to share with my husband and I. I assumed that this was to announce that she and Rob were engaged. We decided to take them to dinner at one of our favorite local restaurants. Amanda was clearly nervous and excited about sharing her news with us. As I was enjoying a lovely glass of chardonnay and anticipating what she was about to say (all the while thinking in my head about how I would and should react), Rob blurted out that he and Amanda were going to be parents. Within literally seconds of this announcement, with my jaw on the floor, our kind waiter asked if we would like another glass of wine. I naturally responded to this in the affirmative.

Fast forward a couple of months. While my sweet hubby and I were simultaneously selling our house in the suburbs, purchasing a sweet “Grandma” house in the city (we had made the decision that summer to downsize and buy an older home now that we were in full “empty nester” mode) and planning for our move to this sweet new house just before Thanksgiving, we were also planning a wedding. Yes, these two soon to be parents were adamant that they would be married before the birth of their first child. Despite some misgivings, we decided to support this decision. So, in January of 2014, I became a mother in law (Change). Then in February of 2014, I became a Grandma. This was a doozie of a change for me. It took me until the day Christopher was born to get over my shit (OMG-I’m only 48, I can’t be referred to as somebody’s grandmother. For Pete’s sake! was the primary theme for me here). But when I saw my Amanda in that hospital bed with this perfect, beautiful, healthy baby boy I realized all my angst was for naught. Amanda had never looked more beautiful to me. She was quite literally glowing, with a relaxed, peaceful smile on her face, she introduced me to Christopher. I remember telling my hubby that I had witnessed in that moment two people falling in love. The look between our Amanda and that precious baby was one of pure, true, forever, love.

Further changes were afoot , however. Around this same time, the hubs had changed positions at work. He was now under the supervision of a new boss, who was based in Washington, D.C. and told that there was an expectation that he move to D.C. or Boulder, CO. within the next couple of years. So after having a lovely couple of years in our sweet “Grandma” house, becoming friends with our neighbors and just enjoying living in the city, we put the house up for sale and moved to Colorado in July of 2016. Big change, people!! Scary-yes. Exciting-totally! Heart-wrenching (saying goodbye to Amanda and Christopher), excruciatingly painful (saying goodbye to all our wonderful friends, neighbors, and church family we had known for 16 years), uplifting (no longer employed as a stressed out social worker), and stress inducing (scheduling the move, packing, unpacking, trying to find a house we could afford in a very different housing market).
As one of my most favorite artists, Sheryl Crow, sings “A change will do you good, yeah a change will do you good”…..

I hope you will stay tuned as the constant churn of change continues for me.

Happiness and love to you,

Rhonda

 

Tales from a 50 year old optimist recently transplanted from Wisconsin to Colorado. Finding silver linings, lifting others up, sharing positively good stuff

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