Am I going to make deadlines? Are the people I work with happy? Am I enough to the people that count on me? Does anything I do really make a difference? Am I busy, or am I effective? Am I contributing enough money to the needs of my family? Am I missing life events because of the demands of work? Have I created one meaningful thing or process to contribute? Is there one idea that is truly mine that I have unleashed to the world? Will passion ever trump the days when I feel disconnected and worthless? Am I able to mask my insecurities? Why do I deflect compliments as if they are hollow platitudes? Am I moving towards the end of my career – years away – as if on a conveyor belt in a factory assembly line, just seeing each day or situation the same as the day before?
Am I doing a good enough job as a spouse? Will I ever be anything more than, maybe, the World’s Okayest Dad? Can I make time to do the things I really love without feeling selfish or not getting house chores or paid work done? Will there ever be enough time to make a visit to my ageing parents worthy of their happiness? Can one more activity (birthday party, sports, craft, play date, etc.) be crammed into a weekend? Am I able to find true happiness without relying on artificial joy? Do I cut myself some slack when not everything gets done? Can I go to bed ever feeling satisfied?
Then one day amidst the empty feeling of wondering what life is all about, why I am here, and whether anything matters at the end of it all, it hit me – I may never know what I want to be when I grow up, but today I am going to be awesome.
I have been on the planet more than four decades. When I was a kid, I thought adults had it all figured out, and if I could just figured out what I was going to be when I grew up (which career, which friends, which place of worship, which spouse, etc.) the world would miraculously come into view. Up until a few years ago, I was still longing for this mirage of reality. And I gave all of that up so that I could live an awesome life.
Will I have bad days? Everyone does.
Will I be frustrated with work at times? Sure.
Will I be imperfect in my home life? Absolutely.
Will I still be sick from time to time? Yes.
Will things always go as planned? No.
Will some days be harder than others to be awesome? I hope so, because it makes the awesome feeling of joy even better.
I will not be aimless. I will not wait for a magic moment when it all clicks and by some miracle starts making complete, cohesive sense. I refuse to believe there is some little man or monkey in a suit behind a curtain pulling levers or manipulating when life is allowed to be good. I refuse to believe that all things happen for a reason or that suffering is necessary. I am daring greatly to find awesomeness each day in a way that makes sense to me without recklessly harming anyone else. I don’t want to wait until failing health or old age to wish life had been better. I am choosing to live it fully now.
Today, I choose to be awesome.