This week marks the 5 years since my grandfather passed away from cancer. As I reflect upon his passing, I have come to appreciate the value that comes from our elders. Those that we should respect for the years they have lived before ours. A wealth of knowledge and wisdom comes from them; as they have experienced more in life with their many years.
I have come to understand that when we accept that there is an end, the present day will all make sense. The present day will not only make sense, but it will begin to have purpose; because without an end, there is no beginning.
There is a saying, “all good things, come to an end,” but we must stop and think; is this truly the end or just a playing field before we go on another adventure. Just because we don’t see it doesn’t mean it might not exist. Take for instance the grand universe in all of it’s complexities, we can admire it from a distance, but human’s only have a small understanding of it’s complexity. Just because we don’t see the center of the universe, doesn’t mean it can’t exist.
During the closing days before my grandfather passed away, I remember getting ready to take him to the hospital. I transferred his frail body into the wheelchair and rolled him through the living room. Just as I turned the corner, he looked at the end of the living room and pointed. In his whisper voice he said, “who is the little boy in the living room?” I looked across the room and saw nothing. All I could do was close my eyes and say within myself, “you can’t take him yet!”
This situation made me ask the undeniable questions of existence; Who was the little boy? Was this boy to take my grandfather away to another place? Was this the end that many speak about?
We need to wake up to our existence; realize that we all have a purpose in the grand scheme of things. When I reflect on life’s purpose, I tend to think about the dandelion seed. The dandelion is considered a weed worldwide. The word “lion” in the name stands out the most to me and just like the name implies it produces just as fast and ferociously; though, the power is not just in the name. What makes this plant even more interesting to me is that it grows the most beautiful seeds. As a child I used to look for all the seed heads (nicknamed parachutes, also known as pappus) and collect them by the hand-full just to blow them across fields and watch them fly away like bubbles in the wind. This most interesting process of what is considered to be a tyrant, becomes the most beautiful. The seeds then travel across the terrain rapidly colonizing disturbed soil, growing expeditiously, enriching the soil with nutrients and hence continuing it’s cycle.
You might be asking, what does this have to do with a dandelion seed, let alone the process? I will share that the dandelion is “you”! We have the opportunity to be just a plain old “weed” or we can leave behind beautiful seeds that will help to bring nutrients to other people’s lives. It’s not what we take, it’s about what we give to the world and those around us.
If we see ourselves as we really are, would we not try to aspire to be better? Sometimes it takes others to help us become the best we can be. Elders are great resources to help us become better. They have had the years of practice to build the patience to become the best teachers life can supply.
Human nature sends society always searching for the fountain of youth. The next best thing to cure the aging process and extend our life youthfulness as long as possible. There are pills for just about anything these days and it makes me wonder … if we just focused our energies on developing the spiritual self, more than the exterior of self, then we could achieve so much more in this life. After all, what are we meant to do with the time we are given? Time is precious, so don’t waste your minutes counting the wrinkles.
When I was in the hospital room with my grandfather and received the words that he only had a couple of months of life left to live. The doctor kindly asked, “has your grandfather ever experienced the pain of loosing someone close to him?” I replied sadly, “yes, he had a son and he died at the age of 4 from internal problems that doctors couldn’t diagnose.” At this moment, I realized that the doctor had to prepare him for the worst; a part of the worst, was gearing him up for having to deliver his last wishes to us, his family. As I closed my eyes, I said to myself, “I do not want to have any regrets in life” and I committed to myself, at that moment, to be there for him every step of the way.
Within the week, I had moved in with my grandfather and began the preparation work needed to help him live out his life. As much as my grandfather believed he would live another 10 more years, I knew there was a chance that the doctors could be right. I began asking the questions I had about life, the past and the present circumstance. Upon asking these questions during our wonderful time together, I asked my grandfather if there were any last minute business items he wished to take care of, after deep thought he said, “I wish to rewrite my last will and testament.” I found a lawyer he trusted and told him to come immediately. A few days later my grandfather met with the lawyer and began to verbally tell the lawyer what he wanted to have in his will. My grandfather finished the paperwork on Thursday and by Tuesday of the next week my grandfather had passed away.
In the 2 ½ months I had with my grandfather by his bedside, I wouldn’t take back a single minute. I put school on hold, with prospective job offers in Los Angeles and at an important time I had paused my life to be there for him. I learned more about myself and my grandfather in those desperate hours than any other time in my life. Every day I am thankful for the time I was given with him, every day I am thankful for what I learned. Life isn’t the same without those experiences and if I would have made the decision to walk away I would have missed out on some important life lessons.
It’s not what you have that makes a difference in your life, it’s what you share that does. I have learned that LOVE is the essence of our existence. To live without love, is to not have lived at all. Without love, we have nothing. Take away your possessions, what are you left with then? Whatever is in your inner being – memories & love!
I tell you this story to inspire you toward change, to give hope to the broken, to bring awareness to those who do just the daily grind (otherwise known as the boring mundane parts of everyday life). It’s time to wake up to a problem greater than what’s on the news or written in tabloids. The problem is in the way we live life and the solution is closer than you think.
If you were to die tomorrow from an unseen circumstance What would you have hoped you had accomplished? What positive things you would have done? Write those things down and start there! Don’t waste time and don’t second guess your thoughts. There is a reason you thought of those things, so go out and begin changing the world for the better.
This has brought me to one final point – This website was brought about by the fulfilling of those desires to make a difference in the world though inspiration. Life doesn’t hold us back, we hold ourselves back! Take one small step at a time and the rest will follow. Find like minded people who believe in the same mission and go out into the world together to make a difference. It starts today… not tomorrow!
Choose to Live Your Life Full of Purpose and Victory!