When Every Moment Counts

Over the past hundred years or so, there has been a fundamental shift in our society. We left the land behind, seemingly happy to be unfettered by planting and harvest, milking and hoeing. Machines started to do the work we no longer wanted to do by hand (sewing, writing, butchering, transporting), and we were all supposed to have more freedom, more wealth, a bigger, brighter, better future with every passing day.

But in the clatter of machinery and the ever-accelerating rush of industrialization and technologization, we’re getting lost.

The land we left behind for the cities is dying, either because we’re trying to gouge every last resource out of it for our own profit, or because, in our carelessness and ignorance and obliviousness, we’re not being mindful of the changes we’re exacting on the planet.

The computers that were supposed to creat a paperless society have instead drowned us under more piles of useless paper than we ever had before.

The 24-hour news cycle that was going to give us more knowledge and open our minds instead has created a din of chattering mindless stuff that goes by the various names of “expert advice,” “informed opinion,” and “must-see TV”.

In our rush to advance medicine to the cutting edge, we were seemingly destined to wipe out disease, pain, aging, death, and any other unpleasant reminders of our mortality. But in this quest, we lost sight of the natural progression of life from birth, through adulthood, into old age and death. We now think any imperfection needs to be fixed, so we take pills and potions to fix it, then take more pills to cover up the unpleasant effects of our first prescription, and before long, we’ve lost any perspective on what’s “normal” and what’s not.

We have germs that no longer go away when we treat them with drugs; we have labels that give an ambiguous, non-threatening sound to our condition; and when we’re not clamoring for a pretty label for what we think we have, we’re begging doctors to give us something for everything that’s wrong with us, when we’re so overwhelmed by drug company advertising and information overload that we can’t even sort out if we really feel what we think we feel or if we’re just in sympathetic vibration with all the noise and confusion around us.

Our kids are no longer allowed to be kids. They see sex and violence on TV and are inundated with sales pitches from their first moments in the world.

They’re scheduled into everything, and now we’re forced as parents to arrange play dates, enrich every day with organized sports, crowd every waking second with educational programming.

And the adults are no better. With the goading of society to produce successful kids, we crave any tiny thing that can let us escape from our responsibility. So we fill our idle hours with playing fantasy sports, eating, watching or typing on screens, buying, lusting, and otherwise simmering.

In all the chaos, life has a way of interrupting what we’re doing, and if we’re lucky, it grabs our attention and won’t let go until we make some changes.

Kids get sick; parents screw up and lose their minds; nature knocks down our pretty houses. Our families splinter, our jobs vanish into the ether of outsourcing and globalization, and we’re left with …

What? What, indeed!

This winter, I’ve looked inside myself a lot, and, spurred on by events around me, I’ve chosen.

I want to spend time with the people who are important to me before it’s too late and I don’t have the chance.

I want to say the things that used to scare me but I really wanted to say.

I want to hold myself accountable for the things I do, and for the things I put off and don’t.

I want to love larger than I thought I could, laugh harder than I believed possible, leave the world a better place than when I got here, even if it’s only because one person coming after me says it’s that way. I want to look back at what I’ve accomplished and relish every part of how I did it, even if some of those parts hurt. I want to let my light shine, regardless if it’s seen and recognized by one person or one million.

Life is a surprise. Without taking myself too seriously, I want to make every moment count, because no one knows when their last moment will arive, and by the time we realize it, it will be too late.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Family and Friends, metaphysics, spirituality

6 Comments on “When Every Moment Counts”

  1. eileen Says:

    Very interesting conversation!
    Mmmmmm, prioritizing, interesting thoughts, realigning values, are all thoughts that can only enrich our lives.
    I agree with you, take yourself by surprise.

  2. halfnotes Says:

    Eileen,

    Thanks so much for visiting. I think life’s surprises can be kind of scary, and a lot of people (including me!) try to avoid the fear factor more than not. Some things are frightening because they should be; but other times, it’s better to grab hold of the fear, acknowledge it’s there, and then leap. In the long run, I think we’re bigger and stronger because of taking risks.

  3. songdeva Says:

    Way to go! Making the decision is the first important step to creating, isn’t it?

  4. halfnotes Says:

    Songdeva,

    Yes, and what a release it is, even just a day after the decision!


  5. Your blog is on the very high level and includes a lot of very interesting information and was very useful for me.

  6. halfnotes Says:

    Brandy,

    I’m glad you enjoy it! Most of the time, it’s fun to write; and even when it’s not “fun” per se, I’m learning something. Thanks for the visit and the comment; best to you.


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