While talking with my son Justin at a beer hall--Urban Chestnut--in St. Louis, the realization hit me with a big sledge hammer that I have a whole lot of reasons to be real thankful. I knew that before, but as we sat at the bar drinking Schnickelfritz, I realized that in a couple of weeks I'll turn 72.
To me that means that I have to bring a little more order to my life and to the time I have remaining. Looking at local obituaries, I see more and more baby-boomers dying in their early seventies. I have genetic family longevity going for me, but I still know that in ten years I will have birthday number 82.
What does this mean?
I need to bring a little more order and intention to my life and make sure I do what I want to get done. Does that mean I'm going to make a bucket list?
Maybe. If I think of my life as a blueberry pie, then I have to let go of some of the tasty morsels with a really flaky crust. I have to just push them over the side and right into the garbage disposal. Can anybody relate?
Will I ever give a TED talk? Nah. Don't see it. Will I ever own a self-driving Tesla? I don't see it. Maybe I'll ride in one someday. Will I ever run in a marathon? It won't happen anymore.
What about my father? Go to the search engine on this blog and put in the search terms, my father and you'll get the story. It's time to let go. He's long dead and I know that I'll never find out more than I know now. My identity is really tied up with this one.
Over the years, I've thought about and did everything I can to establish that fifty percent of who I am and never got much beyond my name and that my dad was a real "scoundrel." It's time to declare the search over. As an antidote to the desire to learn more in this area, maybe, I'll get a tattoo that says "Remember Who You Are!"
It's from a sermon by a pastor where we went to church for several years. He said those who believe in Jesus have a new father, one who won't abandon me and I have a new identity. When he said that I had trouble buying it. The time has come for me to open up that dad door.
What about other stuff? Yeah, there's more of the world I'd love to see with my wife. I want to be able to do at least a hundred sit-ups. I want a heart that's more thankful to God for how much I've been blessed. It's so easy, at times, to forget or to push it into the background.
How will I develop this priority list for the rest of my life? I'll probably write more about it in the very near future. That's my way of sorting things out in my life.
Why am I doing this publicly on a blog? I bet there are a whole lot of baby boomers in a similar situation. Maybe this will help and maybe it won't. Take what you can use and discard the rest.
I enjoy drinking beer with my son and, also, my son-in-law, Adam Jones.