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The transition from Bonnaroo back home is officially complete! I pulled into town around 8 this morning, and was so very happy to see Baby Kitty’s sweet little face. It’s hard to believe the amount of experiences we had over just a handful of days. We ended up being pretty far out from Centeroo (where all of the music happens), but we didn’t let that get us down too much. Next year we are going to seriously consider either VIP camping or an RV, both of which will guarantee us a spot near the entrance. It was a powerful five days full of music, fun and the outdoors… but I am SO glad to be near working plumbing and air conditioning again!
I feel rested and refocused, ready to jump on this week and make some stuff happen. I always end up asking myself big questions while unplugged from the world, like… what happiness really means to me, or what am I doing to make my life the best possible. Is a good life consistently reaching for bigger and better things, or is it savoring here and now? Probably a little (or a lot) of both. I have so many “here and nows” to be thankful for. Adventures, friends and family. And love. Lots and lots of that. I’m such a do-do-do personality… always moving on to the next thing, then the next, then the next. I love the high of accomplishing something challenging. Defying boundaries and climbing walls, destroying preconceived notions and assumptions. The folks I envy most though in this life are the ones who take joy in simple things. Who constantly invest in their own energy and freely give it away to others. People who follow their passions just for the personal fulfillment, not validation from others. I have some distance to go with some of these things, but they are hot on my radar.
What is my passion? What is my ultimate purpose? … and do I need to know these answers in order to truly live? James said something last night that really made me think, that five years ago it would have been impossible to predict what we were doing at that exact moment in time. It’s too hard to see into the future, which I often try to do. And what good does it do us anyway? I think the real compass is authenticity, finding out those big and small things that make us happy… then doing them as often as possible. If you follow happiness, then you will always be on the right path.
Do you ever imagine what it’s like in other parts of the country or world right at this very moment? I’ve been thinking a lot lately about California… probably because their weather is a lot like fall year-round. I wonder what it would be like to have completely different circumstances: to wake up in the life of a celebrity, or a poor child in the Middle East. There are so many life paths ranging from the extremely fortunate to the depressingly unfortunate. Is it the job of those with power and wealth to give back? I think we are all here to do some sort of work and learn valuable lessons. There will always be those who suffer either by their own hand or the one they were dealt. I believe that no matter where we fall on the lucky scale, it is our job to lift up others as often as we can. Give a hug, offer a hand, show a smile, laugh at a joke or just listen to what another human being has to say. The reward for making a connection with another soul on this earth is beyond what I’m capable of describing in words. When we connect, our internal light glows a little brighter.
I often wonder if I do enough for others. I think I am good at being kind and understanding, but what am I really doing that’s making an impact? How am I making a difference with my existence? The answer to this, for anyone, is finding your passion. I think when you find your passion, your purpose is not far behind. My passions are nonprofit work, filmmaking and writing. Passions come in all shapes and sizes – it can be a loved one, a cause, a thing, or an interest. Once you figure out what you love, then you can see in clearer fashion what your purpose here on earth is. The closer you are to being happy, your life path will become easier to walk. You will also help clear the way for others who walk with you. After all, none of us want a life of regret. It is never too late to feel like you did something important for another person or the world at large.
Not to get too out there, but do you ever think about how strange it is that we are even here to begin with? Sometimes I feel like a preprogrammed robot in a singular existence just taking my marching orders as I go through life. But we are the farthest thing from a robot. We are human beings, with very fragile bodies that only last for a certain amount of time. We have expiration dates. While our brains are easily conditioned, they can also be unconditioned. We have free will and choice. So much so that it amazes me that we have any structure at all. Our society is so complex and mostly driven by fear. I wonder what life would be like if we didn’t have to make ends meet, support ourselves or have responsibilities. There would probably be mass chaos, actually. As humans we seem destined to have a purpose. Destined to struggle and fight for our own quality of life. And it must all be worth it because we keep bringing more humans into the world to have the same experience. When life is good, it can be a high like no other. When things are working, it all makes sense.
As I look around my place I see all sorts of things that have value to me and define a little of who I am. In my bedroom there is a large table made from a childhood church door. There are 5 pound hand weights laying in my dresser representing my on and off again love affair with exercise. The TV came from my friend Courtney, who was also a coworker at my last job. I have small wicker shelves that have traveled with me since college. Every little thing around me has a story. That’s why I think it’s so important to really define your space and surround yourself with things representative of you. I have felt reinspired lately to start working on my mini-house again, mostly so I can make it a space that makes me feel truly comfortable and happy. I think I’m about 80% there, so that last 20% will be the real cherry on top.