Tracks In The Dust

A Father's Advice About Learning the Mission of Life

Archive for the tag “Happiness”

House Full Of Love

Something that has become much more evident since my wife and I became “empty-nesters.” We love the evenings of solitude, but we miss the “activity” of the house we once had. Four grown up kids later we realize that with that activity came much more.

Happiness Is

Sure there was the worry about where your kids were in those teen years when they were “just going out with friends”. Yes there were those late night phone calls with urgent requirements ( I won’t explain, but some of you understand I am certain).

In the end the house was full of motion. We tried to create a “house full of love” that our children could feel comfortable to bring their friends to. To share in the laughter and the angst of growing up together. Rock music bumping loud enough to rattle the ceiling fans. video games going into the early mornings, mysteriously missing food from the pantry, laughter and doors opening and closing frequently.

Believe me some of it got on our nerves as parents, but we knew it would end someday and we were happy to know that our kids were okay. Several of their friends have become like part of our family and we still enjoy hearing from them. Sometimes we hit and sometimes we missed with our kids. Some of our kids understood it and some truly didn’t understand the gift.

Today as they are all adults and moved out, we still truly enjoy them bringing friends (significant others too) over, sharing a meal, relating to the world in so many more levels now than in years gone by. What joy it can bring.

It really is a gift of life, and makes for great moments to share and remember.As my wife and I work to enjoy the passage of time, as we have come to realize that our time here on earth is short and we have come to cherish it even more. At this holiday season what we want more than anything that can be wrapped up with a bow is to embrace our “house full of love”.

For your parents out there with younger kids or adults, you will no doubt at one point or another in the next few weeks step back and take in the moment. It is the only one like it and then time moves on. Embrace it as one of the greatest gifts.

I Want Music Everywhere

For a lot of us who are music enthusiasts (and perhaps many who aren’t) it feels like we have a soundtrack for our life stored up on our imaginary music list in our heads. Movies, television and other media help encourage the idea that we are in our own sort of “movie” or video, and we are working through our lives with a soundtrack.

Transistor Radio

These days it is easy to walk through an airport or mall and see people with headphones on. Over the ear Beats headphones (among others) can shut off the rest of the word pretty well and allow for a full scale stereophonic soundtrack to be playing while you are living your daily life.

When I was very young there was “transistor” radios that made portable soundtracks possible. Then in the car, then on tape with the Walkman, then CD’s and ultimately iPods and MP3 players. All designed to allow for a portable soundtrack to play as we moved along our lives from one interaction to another. Even when we are interacting at gatherings, or out in the clubs – we have another soundtrack that complimented our feelings and emotions of the moment.

Perhaps there are some brainwaves that are stimulated by it… allowing for us to be in our own personal movie in our head. Perhaps it is just an emotional indicator for how we see life at the moment, or a way to create the mood we need…. Just watch out for the screen credits to roll (ha)!

Fear of the Unknown

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”

Maria Robinson, American author

Fear

New beginnings come with the idea that there is always unknowns about where the journey should lead. I know I struggle with that every day. It compounds itself in worry, or makes me pull-back from what I am doing and do little or nothing at all. It can make we wish that tomorrow would not come, when there is really no way to stop it. It can create things in the moment that stop me from seeing the things that are right in front of me.

So fear of the unknown is likely to be something to contend with. Our worry over our loved ones, family and children, worry over how to make ends meet or our health. With that worry comes unhappiness, and the possibility of depression.

So what to do about it? For me I have to learn better to share my fears. With my loved ones, with my friends and spiritual leaders. with God who are  all in my life. I have always been private about things in general I guess. I probably got that from my father who seemed to be like that when I was growing up. Perhaps the stoic approach seems good on the surface- after all “why burden others” with your worries and fears?

What you find out is that if you share them, most other people have worries and fears as well. Many times the very same ones. There is no way to turn back the clock. But I can start today and make a new ending…by sharing my fears and thoughts with those who love me. For some ( perhaps even reading this blog) that may mean very little, for others it may allow them to understand themselves better as well.

 

Going to the Extremes

We want to embrace a position on things, everywhere we are being asked for our opinion. We want to look as though we are confident.We want to share why we feel the way we do, and in the end it puts us at odds with each other.

Opnion

 

An example: People may say… you cannot like Green and like Orange at the same time- you are commanded to pick one. After all anyone who likes green surely cannot be an advocate of orange that the same time!  Or at least that is simply what people tend to want you to think.

Choose! This is the world of choice- so why are you in the middle? That makes you seem weak, makes you look stupid or something.

The internet is based around this communication, the media demands it, social networks want to know,… inquiring minds wan to understand and they want an instant response. What do the polls indicate?  Websites want your rating on everything, they measure the clicks to decide “interest” so they can continue to feed you more of what they believe you “like”

So in the end we look for the decision, winners and losers, haves and have-not’s, right vs wrong, “the time has come to stand up!”

And once we huddle around the decision, others “pile on”. They want to be acknowledged in being on the same side. Damn the facts, the hack with how people feel about the opposite things. They are stupid, ignorant, in the wrong “club” or the inferior political party. There is no middle ground, compromising would be a sign of weakness after all. Trust no one who contradicts your position in the choosing! They just don’t understand.

That is the extreme of my frustration I guess. There are not that many absolutes in this world when it comes to opinion. Some people even take the absolutes of the physical world and deny them.  Like there is a place for “maybe” – but only when it means picking an answer with conviction.

ALL that energy. All that anger or resentment. All of the time spent. Debate is healthy, but arguing “opinion” is like saying “my opinion is better than your opinion” … it has some sort of laugh-ability about it really. And sadness

I know I have posted about this before- but I still believe: Life is short. Focus on positives, make the most of the passage of time.

Grow Old Along With Me

There is no reason to be afraid of getting old, it is not something you can change. Furthermore it is not something you likely want to stop doing. The alternative is not exactly desirable.

 

IOldt is great to have a partner in that turning of time. Someone to share the time as the clock ticks by. For some of us that is a struggle, we don’t want to be reminded of the time passing. For others having a partner, someone to “grow old” with may just not in the cards.

But then there are those special times when you are fortunate to find someone who wants to spend time with you. To enjoy the passage of time together. Not every day is a gem, not every hour is a perfect 60 minutes, but there is something that makes each day special just because they are there. Love has many definitions, as does life. Loving life with someone is very special and unique. and should be considered that way.

To my wife, I am always amazed at her patience and her care. We will spend the rest of our days together only as God allows. That is a blessing regardless of the time we have. It is nice.

 

Grow Old Along with Me

 

 

“Grow Old With Me”

Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come
We will be as one
Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come
We will be as one
God bless our love
God bless our love
Grow old along with me
Two branches of one tree
Face the setting sun
When the day is done
God bless our love
God bless our love
Spending our lives together
Man and wife together
World without end
World without end
Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees
We will see it through
For our love is true
God bless our love
God bless our love

 

 

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