A Challenge from Mary Oliver

 “Tell me, what do you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

                                                                                             Mary Oliver

That just about says it all. Mary Oliver was a brilliant and wise poet who, unfortunately, no longer graces us with her presence on the planet. Obviously, she did a lot of thinking about the meaning of life. She was a seeker.

In that respect, we’re all seekers. We’re all looking for clues that we’re on the right path…that we’re not wasting the minutes, hours, and years we’ve been given. I don’t think this quest, or as they say, the hero’s journey, hits us until we’re practically at midlife. Earlier then that, we’re probably struggling to make a living, raise a family, or reach a goal that gives us some measure of pleasure and security. 

This Again?

I know I drone on about this, but only because I think it’s the key to happiness. It may be that until midlife, when you can actually see your past in the rear -view mirror, you’re able to see you’ve been on the path all along. If not, there’s always another path beckoning, enticing you to take the newer challenge, to dare to risk it.

In a way, life’s like the board game “Clue”. We get clues along the way, like breadcrumbs, as to what we signed up for, what mission we chose to accept.

Thank You, Mirror

At midlife, a lot of people jump on the idea of a bucket list. Here’s where the realization that time’s running out smacks you in the face. Another reminder is the mirror. Thank you, God, for giving us that scary visual reminder. Otherwise, we’d go blissfully on our lifetime playground unaware of the ticking clock. I think of the intro to 60 minutes. No matter how much you love the show, it’s over when it’s over. Even the old saying, “it ain’t over ‘til it’s over,” alludes to the truth that it will be over.

 Some people are born knowing what they want to be, or what they’re here to do. Some people simply follow their heart, and this is the road that gives them peace.

Like the old song by the Fifth Dimension, they follow the path that makes them feel” so safe, so sane, and so secure.” You don’t even have to know you’re on it. It’s so intuitive.

If this sounds like you, count yourself blessed. You’re among the lucky ones. 

Others try several paths. But, in my opinion, you can’t do this wrong. You’re here for a reason. 

So, as Mary Oliver so brilliantly wrote, “What do you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?


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