This weekend we will be celebrating my kids birthdays. It’s a bit of a tradition that we do the weekend before if their birthday falls Monday or Tuesday, and the weekend after if its Thursday Friday. I’m not sure what we do when it falls on a Wednesday?
Anyway.. We have a great time, and another unexpected benefit of having twins is that we get to maximise on things like this, and have double the celebration. We’ll do the usual things like cinema and maybe a restaurant for a special tea.
But, inevitably, times like these lead to a bit of reflection. It was almost a decade ago that myself and my wife waited nervously for the imminent arrival. Everything, it seemed, had led up to this point, and we were near one of life’s little nodes. The tension was building, the excitement rising. I felt almost the same when we moved house recently, a real alignment of the stars sort of feeling.
And to make matters worse, Wales were pushing for their first championship win in the ‘6 nations’ since 1994! One of my happiest memories is of watching Wales beat Scotland sat on a hospital bed with one of my wonderful boys in one arm, and the other in the other arm. Another of those unexpected ‘twins’ benefits!
Wales of course went on to win the Grand Slam, and have proceeded to produce one of arguably their most successful periods in history. They’ve won 3 grand slams since then and 4 championships, and as I write they are pushing for a record third championship in a row.
Heres the thing.
As I sit all misty eyed thinking back to 2005 and the birth of my incredible kids, I start to realise that it feels like yesterday. Every moment picked out in bright relief, its easy to recall all the emotions, sights and sounds. But it was almost 10 years ago…
Or on a more mundane level, I think of those four championships for Wales – four, over nine years, a terrific achievement, but each one seems to have happened just the other day…
And I’ve just had another anniversary of sorts. I hit the twelve month mark in my ‘new’ job. It still feels new and exciting, and we’ve achieved so much as a team and a business. I’ve already got lots of great memories of the team and the people who work there. Memories of nights out and wins and losses.
But I started there a year ago. I resigned from my last job almost eighteen months ago!
Time, as they say, flies…
Its one of life’s cruel ironies I think. When you’re a kid and perhaps because you have ‘all the time in the world’ it seems like everything takes for ever. When you’re a grown up the opposite is the case. Just when you’d like to slow down time, or capture a moment for ever, its gone. A fleeting snowflake in the palm of your hand.
And that I think, is my greatest motivator. I feel like there isn’t enough time.
Not to get too dark, the end of everything is rushing ever quicker towards me and there is still so much to do. I reflect on the past for context and really appreciate how momentary everything is.
I’m rushing, rushing on. Got to get it done, I’ve got to win…
I’m trying to remember to take a breath. To reach out and grab another memory to cherish before it alights and is gone, floating away on the eddies caused by the passing world and its thousands of interactions.
The Buddhists among us would have it that one of life’s goals is ‘stay in the moment’. To mediate to the point where the endless rushing torrent of time flows neither backwards and away into our pasts with the yearnings that drive us to despair, or forwards in the future of half-truths and ‘only glimpsed’ possibilities, tantalising in their luminance.
Desire nothing, and feel no pain. they say. As desire is the root of all pain.
I’m not sure I can achieve this.
So time, and its nature to rush on by drives me on. There’s so little of it left, and there is so much still to do. No time to waste – times almost up! Take every chance, throw yourself in! Jump in, both feet. Just give it a try. What have you got to lose?
People are often held back by a ‘fear of loss’. A fear that if they extend themselves into new things, something might go wrong, or they will lose the hard-earned ground they have already made.
Nonsense! You need to push on.
Grow, strive, reach, stretch, really earn it.
Failure is fine as long as we learn along the way, and don’t repeat the same mistakes over and over. In fact, in a lot of ways, failure is the best teacher we can have. As long as we listen for the lessons. It’ll makes us better and faster and more efficient.
Besides, failure is all about perspective. It all depends on where you stand. And if you look around you’ll notice no one is paying any attention to you whatsoever. They are far more interested in their own little dramas. You can carry on, have a go.
Take the leap! No one is watching.
Just do it, as someone once said (!) there’s no time to waste!