…is probably not going to be what this post is about, though I shall try to not stray too far from the subject.
Usually, before I start one of these, I like to think about an idea, a thought I’ve had that day, or even a quote I’ve heard, and work around it. For the last week or so, I’ve not been inspired by any of my day-to-day activities and so have not been able to start a discussion about any particular topic.
We celebrate our birthdays (well, most of us do, unless our religious beliefs are against that sort of thing - I’m sure they still at least acknowledge that they are a year older though), I suppose this is a prime example of how we measure life in terms of how long we have lived, rather than what we have achieved. Does it really matter how old we are? With each year that we age, does it make much of a difference? Do you wake up on your birthday feeling in any way different to how you did the day before? Perhaps some people do, particularly on the ‘big’ birthdays. Turning 18, or 21, or even 50 seems like a huge stepping stone for many. People react to it in different ways, some by feeling mortified at how quickly they seem to be aging, as if their life is going downhill.
I find that ridiculous in some ways. Surely its how you feel inside that counts, not a number. Do you feel 65, or as if you are still a teenager? If you’re young at heart, it shouldn’t be important. And why is it so bad to be old anyway? It should be seen as a good thing. With age comes wisdom (though admittedly, this isn’t the case for everyone).
In other ways, I can understand why some people would feel that once they reach a certain age that things are going downhill. After all, with each passing moment we are slowly getting closer to the end. The problem is, many people spend too much time worrying about getting old, not realising that death could strike at any moment, and that it is what we make of the time we have that should matter. How have we made a difference in our lifetime? What have we achieved? Who have we affected? How are we going to be remembered?
My personal view is that life is for living. And it should be lived to the fullest. Time is precious, it is one of those things that we are always running out of. Now, I’m not saying we should always be on the go, never stopping to sit back, relax a little and look back at our lives, but getting caught up with what the future brings or spending too much time regretting what is too late to change can surely not do us any good. We forget about the present. I try to live without regrets, what is done is done. I would hate to die with regrets - and it’s not anything that I’ve done that I’d end up regretting, I’d regret all the things that I didn’t do. The things I haven’t seen, or heard or known.
My Mum seems to have a similar viewpoint on life, I think thats where I get it from. Something that will always stick with me is a quote she often says -‘I’ll sleep when I’m dead’ I think it pretty effectively summarises everything I believe about life.
Now, I can’t think of any better way to die than at an old age, peacefully in my sleep, but I’d much rather die young having fun and enjoying life than at an old age, realising that I’ve wasted my life away and it being too late to change anything. If you don’t enjoy life then it’s almost as if you’re wasting it.
So, how do you measure your life?