Once upon time, while pondering what the point is, of this crazy, colourful, sometimes overwhelming, thing called life, my dad pointed out a frightening little fact that has stuck with me ever since.
You spend a third of your life asleep, if you’re lucky, you are dreaming sweetly. A third of your life at work, if you are grinding away at that conventional 8 to 5 grindstone, which means you are only left with a third of your life to live? Really! Only one third to do the things that make your heart sing? To make a difference. To love and to adventure.
Now if that doesn’t put a few things in perspective, then I don’t know if anything ever will.
When I was a little girl I wanted to be a ballerina. Now hold on, I know most little girls want to be a ballerina at some point. I mean the sequins, tutu’s and bright shining lights, who wouldn’t want it? But for me it wasn’t just a phase. It was a fire that burned fierce inside my heart. It consumed me in a way that very few other pursuits have been able to since. It was my love, my challenge, my escape and all the beauty I needed in my life. When I danced I felt truly alive and I always had music in my heart. I danced seriously for 18 years of my life. But as with all things that we love, we stand a chance of losing them. I lost my dream of being a ballerina. Through injury. Through lack of discipline. And for momentarily letting my focus slip.
But the one thing I have learnt, and yes I learnt it the hard way, is that life is too short to waste time with regrets. There’s a whole wide world of beauty and possibility out there for those who dare to go after it. I have had many more dreams since wanting to dance the stages of the world. Some have come true. And others have not. Some are still a gorgeous, messy, work in progress. The older I get the more I realise that , theoretically, if I only have a third of my life to make a difference, I sure am going to make it count!
I am going to live, love and adventure the heck out of every day. I will dream another dream, and forge another path. I will make mistakes. And I will grow.
A little more every day.
The unknown is scary but alive with opportunity. The possibility of what lies ahead far outweighs the fear of failure. So as I challenge myself, I challenge you. Go out there and make it count.
A very wise brother reminded me of a quote that sums it all up for me –
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ― Anaïs Nin.
Go forth and be courageous.