Every time I find myself in a dilemma I always hear my Dad’s words surfacing from the far reaches of my memory; as far back as I can remember and still, to this, day, he’s been there to offer me real advice–never one for dramatics–just straight to the point, from his own life experiences, and from his heart. I swear by his advice. He’s never led me astray. He’s the best man I know and the most loving father.
I jotted a few down that really stuck with me, all simple yet earnest:
1. Be your own person and think for yourself
2. Never take the easy way out. You learn nothing from “easy” fixes.
3. Be considerate of other people; your personal choices should never affect people in a negative way.
4. Travel. See the world; that’s when you learn the most about yourself.
5. Never depend on a man; have your own money, have your own things.
6. When you find good people, hold on to them.
7. Fix it or shut up.
8. Don’t lie.
9. It’s OK to make mistakes, learn from them and do your best to not repeat them.
10. You can do whatever you want as long as you put your mind to it.
HAPPY FATHER’S DAY, DAD. I LOVE YOU.
“Does anyone ever stay in one place anymore?” Someone once asked me that. I hadn’t given it much thought until just now as I’m strapped inside of a plane. Upstate New York, West Pennsylvania, Lake Eerie, Flint, Michigan, then our final destination, Chicago. Does a pilot even think of these cities as actual places anymore? Homes to thousand of people who might be wondering what it’s like in the outside world of their small town. Maybe not; the cities are just markers in time. Pittsburg equals two hours until final destination, Flint equals thirty minutes until descent. I wonder if i’ll be happy like we’re all supposed to be. I sometimes think of what life will look like a decade from now. I realize that a Redwood tree would would bend over backwards in laughter over my petty queries. A canyon that’s miles wide would say “come back when you’ve been around 500 years and ask that question.” Every year might seem different, I might feel older, more mature, but then I circle back around and find myself unsure again, reaching for something that I don’t quite know how to bring to fruition. I’m 18 years old again. I somehow wake up in a new city thirsty for some sort of knowledge to make me wiser, if only just to fuel another singular thrust forward, until I decide this is too much, too fast, and I try to disappear again, take a break from my own reflection. To know that we exist for only a moment, a breath, a blink in time, I almost hate to waste a millisecond of it making plans for a life that will one day become dirt. Nothing is permanent so why should a home be. Today my front door is in Chicago, the Middle of America, always somewhere in the middle. Fitting. Where will my best friends be? How long will we survive? A social worker, a writer, a teacher, potter, painter, lawyer, a fighter, a mother, an addict, a drifter. Just filling in a small span of time, only to make that void seem a little smaller until it almost closes in on itself, but never quite completely filled. And again, I have to reach for the arm rests just to get a grip again. Too much, too fast.