Making It Count, Part II

If you read the first chapter of a book, then skip forward and read the last chapter, everything that happens in between is just filler “stuff.” Ever heard the saying that it doesn’t matter the date you’re born or the date you die; everything happens in that little space in between? The hyphen is the most important part on a tombstone? Let’s talk about that.

We know the first chapter and we definitely know how our book of life will end. No matter what we do to try and change it, facts are facts and our last page will end like everyone else’s. But what about all those chapters in between? That’s where the truth is. That’s where our legacy, our dreams, and our impact is. Imagine a book with the first and last chapters written. All the pages in between are blank and just waiting to be written. That’s what we have folks.

All the people I walked amongst in the cemetery the other day filled their pages. Some didn’t have enough time to complete their story the way they would have liked to, while others had an ample amount of time to write a series of books. We can’t choose how much time we have to write our pages. That’s not up to us. But what we can decide is how those pages are filled.

What’s in your pages right now? Are we still trying to rewrite the first couple chapters? Are we trying to cheat our way out of the last chapter? Are we allowing someone or something else to write all the meat in the middle for us? Or…are we picking up the pen and choosing our own story? Are the pages filled with stories of courage, resilience, and impact? Or are they filled with fear, doubt, and isolation?

As I wrote yesterday and the day before, we have one chance to make it count. Nobody can force us and only we can allow someone the ability to steal it from us. Don’t waste an opportunity that is fleeting each day. Don’t abandon what many wish they could go back and rewrite, only to reach the last page and it was too late. Go ahead. Pick up your pen and begin writing.

And as for the ducks, yes, I was able to sit and get some shots of them while the sun was setting.

I truly appreciate you taking the time to read this. I would love to hear from you and if this small series encouraged you. If you can, please leave me a comment below. Also, make sure to hit the SUBSCRIBE button so my posts are delivered right to you! Thank you again.

Making It Count, Part I

Yesterday, I told you about walking in a local cemetery, taking some wildlife photos, and just taking some time to be alone and think. I think cemeteries are a good place to do that. For one, they’re typically the most quietest of places you can possibly go to. The only noise that may break up the monotonous silence is a car, or in the case of a funeral with military honors, the sound of Taps playing from a bugle and the sound of rifle fire. Other than that, a cemetery can pretty much be counted on as being quiet.

I visit the Saratoga National Cemetery a lot. Not as much as I used to, but it’s a place I like to go to and spend time reflecting and thinking. I like other cemeteries as well however because of the many different stones. Some people have huge elaborate stones that probably cost more than my car. Some are small and if you blink you’ll miss it altogether. Some have a lot of ornaments and flowers, while some have nothing at all. This particular cemetery has numerous small buildings throughout, where people are placed, rather than in the ground. I say “small,” but some are more than half the size of a single car garage. I found it slightly comical when I saw a “For Sale” sign on one. I want to know that person’s secret!

As I walked around and waited for the sun to set a little lower, determined to walk my three miles I told myself I needed to, I realized I wasn’t alone. Now before you think I’ve lost it and I’m going to say, “I see dead people,” that isn’t the case. But truly, I wasn’t alone. I was surrounded by people, who although they are no longer part of this world, once had breath. At one time they had living friends and family, they had passions, goals, desires, and an idea of what they wanted to accomplish. They had hopes and dreams, and while I hope each was fulfilled, I know realistically many departed this world with some unfinished work.

As I began to think about this reality and how life, even if we live to see over a hundred years old, is short. The first twenty years are spent learning how to become an adult, then we are an adult and spend all of our healthy and good years working for a retirement that we will most likely have less than twenty years to enjoy. Then we die. Not trying to sound blunt, but that is how each and everyone one of us is going to leave. There’s no avoiding it and all the age defying lotion and Essential Oils in the world isn’t going to change that. You and I are going to die. From the moment we are born we have begun the dying process.

I don’t want you to read up to this point and get depressed. Since we know the end result, and since we can do nothing to change yesterday, that should give us some hope. It should ignite a fire inside of us. It should give us a burning desire. A desire and passion I’m going to talk more about in the next entry, Making It Count, Part II. Why? Simply because each person I walked amongst in that cemetery once had a passion. For some it ended too soon. We owe it to each person no longer living.

Thank you for taking the time to read. I hope you enjoyed. If you did, will you do me a favor and type a comment, leave a message, or subscribe? Thank you!