Saturday, August 01, 2009


Earlier this week I was rummaging through a closet when I discovered a box of forgotten photographs. They were quite a revelation. These pictures represented snapshots of my life for the last 30 plus years. What struck me the most was how many happy moments there have been. Some of the events in these pictures were the births and childhoods of my two sons, many Christmas mornings and other family celebrations, trips to the mountains, Grateful Dead concerts, visits to the monastery, and more. There were pictures of me with hair down to my shoulders. These brought smiles to my face since I am sitting here now looking like a Buddhist monk with a beard. Now, in these days of the empty nest and occasional unhappiness, I pause to think that many of my best years were the years of raising my children. In spite of this I refuse to think the best years are all in the past. I want to live with the mentality that today is as good as any other day and that the future is full of promise. Each stage of life should have its own value and rewards. My children are grown men but now I have a beautiful five year old granddaughter who worships the ground I walk on. I am still working but the dream of retirement is in sight and within my grasp. My body isn't what it used to be but I think my mind and heart are better than ever. These old pictures brought back a lot of happy memories but they also brought some sadness. I was reminded of family members, especially my wife's parents and my father, who are no longer with us. Death and my own aging has changed my life. Lifestyles and traditions of the past are gone forever and new lifestyles and traditions are being created. I'm glad I found these photographs. They remind me that my life has probably been better than I think it has and perhaps I have not always been as grateful as I should be. Going forward, I will mourn some of what has passed, try to be happier in the moment, and always be hopeful for the good memories that haven't been experienced yet.

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