My wife, Maria, and I went with my sister and a group of friends to see the Rolling Stones concert in Atlanta this past weekend. I now can put a check in a box of life experiences I’ve had, or wanted to have, by seeing them on stage. These guys are in their late 70s and perform like they’re in their 20s. It was totally awesome to see how much energy they exuded for three hours. I wonder if they put a check in the band’s box, or a personal box, about performing at that age.
As we go through life, we all have experience boxes that we check. Some we choose, while others are forced on us because of situations and expectations. I decided to see the Stones perform, but I didn’t choose to lose a good friend, who passed away earlier in the week.
I think men and women have different boxes, and in a traditional family the boxes form around the various roles a father or a mother takes on. I can only speak of my experiences, mistakes, joys, choices, regrets, triumphs and tragedies, and there have been many. After all, just about everything comes with some type of pictures or instructions of how to assemble it. That’s not so with day-old babies! Hospital staff just rolls you out, puts everyone in the car and wishes you good luck. We as moms and dads have to start putting this new caretaking puzzle together as quickly as we can, and with only 24 hours in a day. We start making choices and decisions that we hope are the best for our kids and our families.
What box got checked for me in Atlanta? It’s called “future.” The content of the box consisted of my two children, Abbie and Annie. In addition to going to the concert, I was able to spend some time with Annie and Dave, her future husband. We talked about the highs and lows, ups and downs, rights and wrongs of a marriage. I shared with them about my divorce, the blowback from it and the chance to find love again in this season of life. And I know that I will get to see Abbie again on a different stage of life.
If you were to put all your time, heart, energy and money into a certain box, hoping to get that box checked so you could move on to the next one before time runs out on you, what would that box be? A certain job? More money? A house? Your position at work?
Which one of these boxes will be the one where you feel the love you have for the important people in your life, and you tell them?
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