Friday, January 17, 2014

Live Like You Mean It

Elton John had a song back in the day about Saturday night. The refrain was something like, "Saturday, Saturday, Saturday night's all right with me." I disagree. My night is Friday. Every Friday night seems like a mini-holiday to me. But not for the reasons of my younger years, when it meant much wilder things than it does now. Now I treasure it as a time of rest and reflection on the past week . A needed respite from spending my days with adolescent energy.
Today marked seven months since Glenn's death that night. In the part of my mind that is the little bit concrete- sequential enough  required to be a teacher, I pondered with Misty today whether I should mark the date as the 16th, since that is the true night he died, or the 17th, which is on the death certificate. She pointed out that it really doesn't matter. Oh yeah., it really doesn't. Thank goodness for truths spoken outside the bathroom door between classes.
When I pass these milestones, I take the opportunity to check in with myself and see how far I've traveled on the journey. I have always believed I would keep this blog for a year, and that is still my intention.  Not because there is anything magical about one year, but because  there needs to be a jumping off point, where life isn't always reflected by the memories of the past, but by experiences yet to be had. I'm honoring Glenn by living my life.
Glenn Derby taught me many things on the journey we shared; he taught me things like how to fish, how to camp, how a cow is inseminated(don't ask...it was a long road trip through North Dakota) , he showed me mountains and taught me how to dance. We saw the Twin Towers a month befor 9/11 and ate lobster on Long Island. But mostly he taught me how to live with intention. To laugh and cry from the same deep place in my gut.
My dear friend Leslie sent me a great article from The New Yorker magazine, called "Nobody's Son." It is written by a man who had recently lost his last parent, and his mix of emotions, but it really applies to anyone who has lost a loved one. This line, supposedly spoken by his father after death resonated with me, and indeed, started me down a path of joy and healing, rather than sorrow.

"Don’t be stupid, he says. You don’t love me less by living more. Live! Live like you mean it."

When I read this, I realized that this was Glenn's final lesson for me.
                          Live like you mean it.

Being intentional, on the journey.