What would I yell from the rooftop if I could? Today–at this point in my life?
I’ve come to understand a few things about myself, so it would be different today than it would have been when I was younger. It will probably be different another five, ten, twenty years from now. But I know this, I must live life without apology. I would encourage whoever could hear me to be brave, be bold. But live gently all the same. Don’t hurt others, build them up. Leave them better if you can and if, for whatever reason, you can’t, at least leave them alone–no worse for having met you.
I’ve violated this. I’ve been wrong. I’ve been hurtful. I’ve been unfaithful, untrue. I’ve lied and deceived to get what I wanted. I’ve been selfish–I am selfish, but I want to be kind, loyal and loving. (To be fair, I’ve lived over half a century.)
I’ve been a fox, a weasel, a rat and I want to be a dove, a loyal Labrador, a worker bee contributing good things to the whole. I want to be selfless, kind, generous; able to not get angry or spiteful. I want to be clever, profound, able to leap small minds in a single bound. I want to have something important, something meaningful to say, to contribute.
But I am vain and self-centered, yet I’m self-debasing and insecure. I’m wimpish, afraid to say or write the things I know and think. Afraid to be known but I want to be known–and I want to know someone as deeply.
Relationships matter most in this life and I’ve failed them. Not all of them obviously, but some significant ones. I’m sorry I wasn’t what I should’ve been. I’m sorry I’m not a better person than I am. I’d like to be Florence Nightingale, the Biblical Ruth, my own saintly mother, my grandmotherly former mother-in-law, Suzy Homemaker. But I also want to be Delilah. I want to be Aunt Bee in Marilyn Monroe’s body. I want to be ‘pleasing’ to everyone who knows or meets me. I’ve wanted to be so many things.
So I would tell you, don’t spend your life waiting for something to happen–live it–live it now–live it boldly–give it all you’ve got in every way big and small. Forgive, and keep forgiving, yourself for your failures and your sins no matter how many, or how bad you believe them to be.
What’s that you say? Not realistic. Sounds silly, crazy, weird. Real people can’t afford to live that way. I am weird and crazy anyway, so why not be weird and crazy, and happy?
You are free to spend your life as you please. Don’t spend it waiting to become. Enjoy the wine of living from the goblet of your experience.
So, what would I yell from the rooftop today, if it was the last thing I could say?
It’s your life–it was made to fit only you–so live the life out of the life you’ve been given.