Friday 10 March, 2017 by Uncle Spike
So far, I have lived a varied old life. In my half century and a bit, life has thrown all sorts of adventures, joy, and drama in my general direction. Some chapters have been amazing, others less so, some more chilling in their stark reality of our own fragility and mortality.
I have traversed the globe, sought out adventure, learned to succeed, accomplished much and tried so hard to learn from my many failures. I have learned to respect, learned to love; yet struggled with intolerance for the idiocy witnessed all too often in our world. I have battled demons and celebrated personal success, and discovered the enchantment that is to be loved, and lived on while others have passed. Life is a journey, an adventure, a book of many chapters.
We all travel our own paths, that is a fact. We experience our own traumas and exultation in search of a destiny worthy of our dreams. Often we find that life throws a bloody great metal wrench at us when we are not looking over our shoulder, forcing us to face a crossroads, a choice – dig deep, leap across the chasm and soldier on, or fade away and accept a chapter of dreariness and disenchantment.
I have met many people from all walks of life. Some I remember, many I have to admit I do not. I have come across regular people who have enlightened minds, are driven professionals or great athletes, and those who simply battle the odds stacked against them every single day.
Maybe it’s an age thing, that mid-life roadblock or the bell of wisdom tolling in the distance that makes some stop, rethink, retarget, and refocus. Life is not a rehearsal (love that statement). It is a single volume book. It has a beginning and an end we have little control over, yet the chapters we face contain choices by the bucket load.
Recently, I have borne witness to some incredible turnarounds. Normal everyday people who, after a lifetime in one direction, have suddenly stunned the world with a full-blown 180ᵒ shift. I have seen weight loss transform beyond belief, folk who have lived on the larger side of life take up Zumba, marathon running, canoeing, dancing, triathlons, and advanced Pilates. I have seen proud people face personal torments head-on, and incredible bravery in going public with their struggles, showing the world that they never give in.
Some don’t wait for the future, they make it. Some create their own chapters in life, instigating complete and absolute change, who accept the reality of their lives, and choose to grab it by the short and curlies, buckle-up and stun the world.
I dedicate my words to a number of personal friends, former professional colleagues, and family members. To those nameless few who enthuse me to face my own future, I thank each and every one of you. Your lifetime is your own, but realise this; your actions are recognised, your inspiration acknowledged. To each of you, I doff my proverbial cap.
A final thank you is addressed to my beloved wife, who is, and has always been the most ardent supporter of my occasional penship.