The purpose of life it to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. ~Eleanor Roosevelt
I love this quote, and have had it posted on my refrigerator in one apartment and three different houses as we’ve relocated from place to place over the past decade. Why? Well, it’s a reminder to live something new and wonderful every, single day. I’d love to say that I’m an expert at that, but there are plenty of times I have gotten up, gone to work and gone back home without doing anything spectacular. I’d love to say I’ve visited lots of remote places and eaten turtle blood soup with people of little known cultures. Yep…right after I climbed Mt. Everest and ran a marathon (or even two miles). I used to think I had to do those things to expand my life, and believe me, I’d LOVE to (minus the turtle blood soup), but I’ve come to see that life is an experience if we just experience it, which also requires jumping in and getting started.
It’s surprising that these are a glimpse of a few of my meaningful adventures: the time my older brother and I were kids and wanted to share the experience of riding together down the big hill by our house. We connected ourselves by about six feet of string–one end tied to my index finger and the other end tied to his. Naturally, the ride began at the top of the hill, he on his skateboard and I on my bike. Well, that was so meaningful, we somehow coordinated running to our house, screaming as our fingers turned blood-red by the tightened string. It ended horribly, but it’s something we can laugh about today (and we both still have all 10 digits). There was also the time I was going to win the fifth grade girls’ 50 yard dash on field day. I won the blue ribbon the previous year for my class and was ready to reclaim my prize until my foot got “tangled” (as she remembers) with my best friend’s, and I fell on my face, a dusty pile of sweat and tears. Something else? In 7th grade, I was on the homecoming court. “No one has messed this up; don’t be the first” was what we were told after being given the directions on how to walk in and stop to have our picture taken. I’m not quite sure what happened, but my picture with my embarrassed date is probably the only one in school history that is different than all the others. On an adventure quest, I climbed to the top of a 50-foot high telephone pole and jumped for the trapeze that seemed like a mile away. I missed it and climbed right back to the top. I never reached that stupid trapeze, but the best part of that story was that I tried again.
So, clearly, some of these experiences didn’t go so well and others had happy endings… if I change my perspective a bit. I learned that all of these things are a part of who I am. Still today, I can laugh about a lot and throw out a “remember the time when…?” Sharing the journey with others sweetens my existence and my relationships. That’s why I am choosing to continue my own kind of adventure and jump into this blogging thing without rules or promises of any kind. I am learning that the best way to get started is to just. get. started (and thank you, Cheryl, for putting me on a deadline :)).