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Monday, 27 August 2012

Before My Final Bow

I think an awful lot about living, but not as much about dying. Yet we're all proceeding towards our own horizon, that vanishing point where perhaps our greatest questions will be answered.
That's not by any means a concession, by the way. I'm not convinced that we journey beyond death, yet I'll grant that many think otherwise. For me, when my thoughts do turn toward the last horizon it isn't long before a whole things-to-do list piles up before me ahead of this absolute rendezvous.
There's so much I want to see. The giant redwoods, the Angel falls, the snow capped Rockies amidst the glare of a cloud free sky. Will I ever get to do these things? Will life conspire in some nefarious way to deny me?
Actually, it will probably be something as banal as financial limitations that prevent these dreams from transitioning to reality. Life's mundane requirements have this unpleasant habit of standing just where you'd prefer them not to. Still, I won't readily forget that my life is already a rich tapestry of chaos, and I don't want for material comfort or family love. Yet all the same, let's be honest here; we'd all rather have a little more?
I expect I shall continue to grapple with life's big questions, just as I'll fight my own internal struggles to balance my selfish expectations with the reality of life around me. One things for sure; I won't settle into some mundane semi existence whilst I have the strength to contest such a dire outcome. Nor will I submit myself to fakery when it comes to my personal interactions with others. I'll let relationships form naturally, declining to work either too hard or too little at them. Both extremes present a nasty little trap which actually erodes the respect that people will have for you anyhow, and I'd rather be disliked for authentic reasons than appreciated for false one's. It's also impossible to have any relationships of meaning without incurring some sacrificial cost, regardless of how rich they are. My children, whom I love, take a lot of time to raise, and I'm not at liberty to cheat on my wife for reasons of moral consistency, however tempting this cherry often seems to many men in long term relationships. I do hope the last comment hasn't caused too many jaws to drop; I'm just honest enough to confess that my mind sometimes goes where my body cannot decently follow. Call that immoral if you want; I'll stick with transparent.
So life continues, the days pass, a mix of freedom and responsibility, a balance of weighing the needs of others with my inner desire to have my cake and everyone else's, too. And always, in the distance there's the knowledge that one day the party ends, that life won't go on and that I will be but a memory lost amidst eternity. Perhaps as I age I will extend such a terminus a bit more thinking time, but today I'll afford it no more than I passing nod. I know you're out there; I know you're approaching like a weather front gathering strength somewhere out in the Atlantic. Don't expect me to welcome you, or offer you a warm welcome. I've a lot of things I'd like to do first.

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