I recently passed the age my father reached. It's had a way of making me think a bit differently about the future and what is really important. I suppose my recent thoughts should have come to me earlier in life but they didn't. Some people need to see more to understand what seems to come easily for others. I don't know if it has something to do with being very busy or just self-absorbed.
Today is the first day of 2016. A good time for new things. New habits. New behaviors. I don't know what they are yet but I know they should start becoming part of my life now. I don't usually fall into the New Year's Resolutions routine and make some resolve to change or reform a part of my life because I've always felt that I didn't need a "date" for making changes that should always be a regular part of my life. I think the timing of my thoughts just coincidently fall on this date.
My brother and I talked today. It's his birthday. He also expressed the same thoughts I've been having. We recently attended a birthday party for our grandmother who turned 100. I think the normal and sobering thoughts of mortality are creeping in but with this birthday event came the realization that I have only lived half the life that she has. Its the glass half empty/half full thing. I know I may not make it to 100, as most of the men of our family have seemed to demonstrate, but the possibility is certainly there. I think I'm coming to accept the fact that no more time is guaranteed for me yet the fact remains that I may have only reached half way and still have another life left to live. My brother mentioned how he wished he had the wisdom he has now back when he was in his 20's, I imagine so he could have made wiser decisions for living out the last 30 years. But if I were to consider that I have yet another half a life left then the wisdom I have now can be use for that next period.
All that said (in spite of not having given it the thought it deserves) I don't really regret most of the decisions I made in the last 50+ years. I don't think I made the best decisions all of the time but I had a smaller amount of wisdom to work with. Well there were times certainly that I had sufficient wisdom and still made wrong decisions. Yeah, those were official sins. I can't change the past but I have this future that can have some amazing potential.
Having passed the age of my father I now will look at my coming years as "bonus" time. I plan to make those years a little more special, more deliberate. If my life were to end tomorrow I think I could accept that, a bit sad for some of the poor judgements of the past but acceptable. This view gives me the feeling about the future as being more than I deserve and will help me to appreciate each day more fully and use it more wisely. I have no idea what steps to take next but I feel that I'm more prepared to take them than ever before.