Our days are captured in moments that quickly turn into memories. Even before we can truly be sure of the events and how they transpired, there is some distrust that what we just saw didn’t really happen. Life will turn on us in an instant and answer a single wish in another. We thrash about trying to make it make sense, but it doesn’t. It’s not supposed to.
We can be sitting in place when something comes along that requires us to move. We can be busy moving along and something requires us to stop. That is the way life works…for all of us.
Growing up, I wanted to be a professional athlete. Why? because I was good at it. I excelled in practically every sport I played…even the ones I didn’t like. But I competed well. God-given talent had allowed me to continue to play through high school and had opened opportunities for me to play in college as well. Instead, I took the rational route — the one that made sense. So, I studied Political Science in college with the intention of going onto law school. If you had asked me then “WHY” I was choosing that vocation and not another, answer would be simple. It made sense. To whom, I am unsure. It was a job that would turn into a career with whatever benefits it afforded me. Maybe it would have turned a few heads (which has never mattered to me) or given me money beyond anything I had seen before (which has never bought happiness).
Then, life happened. I fell in love and love and had three sons. I dabbled from one industry to another, never really finding my niche. Never feeling like I had much to offer, like I did when I walked on the basketball court or ran out to left field. I found myself believing that everything I was good at was all spent in my younger years and never questioned there was anything more.
Then, one day almost six years ago, my true purpose became clear in ways I still cannot even describe. It became very clear that everything I had lived in the earlier 41 years had been everything it needed to be to get me to this point. In some ways, it was a “set-up” — the only road I was meant to travel to get me “here.” My life was moving along like most of yours and in an instant, it came to a crashing halt and I couldn’t even tell you why.
Without warning or alarm, my legacy in life would now take a different direction and would steer me towards a destination I did not yet know. Over the course of these past few years, I have witnessed the same phenomenon occur to others as well. Just as it did me, it has startled them, kept them guessing and full of doubt, yet somehow guided them all the same as if wrapped in the caring arms of a loved one.
Some will not understand this life we were “born to live” while others will be angry that they have not been given such an “assignment.”
But we all have a legacy to live.
It is the answer to every question we have ever asked…
“How do I live my BEST life?”
The answer is simple, but doing it requires a little more effort. The key to doing anything well is to be honest with what you are doing, the reason behind your actions, and your motive. Be you.
For example, you can have great intentions but if the way you share those intentions is questionable, then that is not living your best life.
We live our purpose by intent, honesty, and integrity. It is cemented in the understanding in the bigger purpose involved, even if that means it does not keep you close by. It is fermented in the energy we exude to others in situations that might otherwise cause people to run. It provided strength, courage, and a deeper understanding of what it means to fight through adversity. It reminds us of who we are, what we believe, and what matters most.
Our true legacy will never be found in a “Top 10 list” somewhere or have the most “downloads.” It may not even break a record or set one, for that matter. Permitting our hearts to lead us to uncharted territories — without excuse — not only sets us free, but it inspires others to do the same.
You see, our answer is not based on the question asked. It is merely a response to a life yet to be molded. To grow and to shape the lives of others, whether intentionally or not.
Every day, we have an option…a choice. To live as we always have OR to live with meaning. To live recklessly at times with full abandon to whatever comes next. To saying what needs to be said before a regret sneaks in to remind us of a moment lost forever. To passionate living — full of laughter, memories, and the people who make you better.
Life is short and we don’t get any chances to do it over. Your answer to life will be reflected in your story and the legacy you left along the way. Your purpose in life is to be everything you were born to be. When it is all said and done, our life and the choices made along the way will keep our memories alive and well.
“There comes a day when the risk to be held tightly in a bud is more painful than the risk to bloom.” – Anais Nin
Our lives are to be full of making this world better and to change it in some way…not because we were assigned to it. But because we chose it. And in turn, maybe it chose us too.
Michelle A. Homme 2015 ©