limbo is ok. it is ok to be in limbo sometimes in life – in your job, with friends or family. it gives you time to reflect, to think, to plan for the next step. limbo is something that always happens in life to everyone at some stage. we keep going on a constant path, juggling all the things in life – our goal is to keep busy, to be productive, to strive for more, to gain more order in life, to understand more, to learn more, to experience more, to make mistakes, to learn from our mistakes, to be positive, to push harder, to have bad days, to have good days – and to be in limbo – long or short – we go into limbo in areas of our life. we get confused, we get out of sync, we get worried, we want to have routine back, we want to know what is next, we want to know what to expect each day, we don’t like limbo. but if you look at limbo as a good thing – as a thing to help us get through change, as a thing to help us understand who we are, as a thing to appreciate, as a time of reflection – then we can accept a state of limbo. but you must use limbo to prepare for the next organized phase. do not waste limbo. use limbo to your advantage to make the next stage better. limbo is good. embrace limbo like you should with all change. change will always come. limbo will sometimes come. embrace both and use them both to your advantage.
what is needed every day in life? you need food, water, shelter and encouragement. how about encouragement? what is encouragement? who needs encouragement? the answer – it is one of the most important things that you need in life on a continuing basis. how different is your life if someone gives you encouragement every day or every few days or even every week – all of these scenarios create a huge difference in someone’s life. it is not something that you think about all the time. it is not something tangible that you can hold or see. it is something that you can hear. we all have insecurities even if we don’t verbalize them all the time. our job is to push back these insecurities and move forward to make progress and reach our goals. many times you can just do it on your own because you start to have experience and you just push through based on what you have done in the past. but, when you tell someone about a problem that you are having or a doubt that you have about doing something – how wonderful it is when someone tells you back – “don’t worry, you can do it – you will be ok” you know that deep down you can probably do it without hearing these words, but when you do hear these words, especially when you are looking for encouragement – it is a game changer and it keeps you going and it keeps you pushing for what you need to make things happen and keep things on track in your life. so what you can do is find that person that you see or talk to all the time and you can ask them for encouragement. make sure that it is someone that is true and honest – someone that always tells you the truth. this is the person that will help get you through life – no matter how strong and organized we seem on the surface – we all need encouragement all the time. you can give encouragement back as well – you need to help others too. next time you need encouragement – ask for it and next time someone asks you for encouragement – give it.
not including the “no premarital sex” path followed by some and just focusing on “the talk” that you give your teenagers – this is how it should go:
you want to be very clear and very blunt – and you want to definitely give it to them by 16 – when they start more serious dating. we all know what teens are capable of regardless of what they tell you. you want to tell them that things can happen and they need to be prepared – and they need to tell their parents the truth – to a certain extent – so everyone is on the same page and no mistakes are made. there comes a time when you realize time is going fast with your kids, especially when they hit 16 and approach 18. you have to give up the long held belief that nothing will happen until they are 18 and legally adults. things will happen before then and as they get closer and closer to 18, there is less and less you can do about it. so instead, be straight with them about the perils they could face and even advise them to take precautionary measures. reality is reality and it is what it is – no time to dance around the subject – get to the point and make an impact with your words.
it does breed contempt – no doubt about it. this is another part of human nature that you cannot control. it is in all of us. even the people closest to us like family – we do not like everything about them – we can’t because no one is perfect and no one can meet every expectation you have. you like every part about them, but there is always one habit or behavior you dislike. the longer you know someone – the longer you are around someone – you will eventually find something that you do not like about them. this is not a bad thing – this is human nature and the “endless” march of time coming together. it is inevitable that this will occur. your best friend for 50 years – there is something you do not like about them. your spouse of 50 years – something that gets to you. your parents – eventually they get on your nerves – and you breed some contempt. as long as we know this is part of human nature – just like hate, love, war, jealousy, greed, kindness, etc – then we know it is a natural thing that is a part of who we are. it is ok if this happens but try to keep it in check or you might find yourself alone one day. just another thing we have to manage as we try to keep our grip and keep our place in society.
when you see the mind start to go – it is a sad and terrible thing – especially in a parent. they can still talk to you and conversations are easy – but the confusion starts and the memory loss kicks in. though you can converse, there is not much detail anymore – general answers only. they can still eat, shower, read, clean up, dress – all the usual things in the normal way. but you do see the mind go a bit – repeating questions, repeating observations. you start to realize that things will never be the same. they can’t be alone anymore, they can’t remember to do the key things of each day – they can’t remember to eat or take their medicine – so even if they can do all the other things – if you don’t eat or take your meds – that is a problem – and it requires people to be there and to help get these things done to survive. as the child of the parent that is starting down this no-return path – you start to think about how will you set up the next stage for your parent – how do you make all the decisions – where will they live, how will they live – in a home or at home with the family. how much money is there to make these changes happen – to transition into this unfortunate phase. it happened quite fast – 6 months ago there was some forgetfulness – no biggie at the time – comes with older age – could last for years – but then in a flash – getting lost while driving the usual route, wandering down the street a bit, not getting dressed entirely – unusual things happening – and next thing you know, they are staying in your guest room and going home does not seem like a clear option anymore. you have to face it because they can’t face it anymore – their mind is in the last battle – trying to keep things normal but also knowing something is wrong which they can’t explain because it is their own mind that is confused – it is a never ending loop of confusion and the eyes are not as engaged as before – there is now a distance to them – brought on by this unseen confusion. you start to realize that when you talk with them, it won’t be remembered so you are really talking to yourself but it gives you comfort to hear them agree with you even though they don’t understand anymore. when you see the mind start to go, you realize that there is change coming – for them and for you
victory is an amazing feeling – especially in sports. you play a sport to have fun but sometimes you join a team to compete for a title. you develop good connections with your teammates and you work together to win – to beat the other teams. nothing beats the moment your team clinches a title – with everything on the line – coming down to the last point, the last game, the last match. you are alive and in the moment – more alive and in the moment than most times in life – you feel the pressure of the moment – you feel the tension of the next move – will you respond the right way – will you stay focused in the moment and push through to win. it is truly a microcosm of life – the pressure is on – will you handle the pressure and prevail or will you buckle under the pressure of the moment. this is the true test of life and the true test of sport. your team is relying on you – they are watching you, they are praying for you to win – to help clinch the title for your team. and when you do push back against the pressure – when you do focus on the moment – when you do make that last winning shot to help take your team to the next level – to claim victory – to shout out loud your victory – only then will you truly feel alive – when you feel victory, you really feel alive on this earth at this moment – it is so exhilarating. go play a sport, join a team, feel the pressure and clinch victory – there ain’t nothing like it.
when you are young, you don’t notice much because you are too busy focusing on the moment. you don’t notice any problems going on in your family or if family members need your help. you are young so you figure the adults will take care of things. this goes on into your 20s – it’s all about you. but then you get older and you start to see the cracks of imperfection in your family tree – and this is normal – to see reality and for reality to be imperfect. once you get past the fact that nothing is perfect, including your family, you then start to realize that people need help. people are not perfect and people fall down all the time. naturally, you first look to take care of your own problems and your own immediate family – and this is your first priority. but then you realize that people in your extended family need your help. so you must help them as well. you must talk to them, you must console them, you must try to comfort them – and talk them through their problems. you must not give up helping others – you must continue to help your family and friends as long as you can. all people need help sometime – so help them if you can. one day you will need help too.
don’t want to use the word shit but there is no way around it. every day, every week, every month, every year – there is shit going on all around us. i mean bad shit. bad shit in the world and bad shit in our own lives. we see relatives dying, friends getting sick, people we know dying young, kids getting in trouble, parents getting old, people getting fired, people getting divorced, teens dying young, friends losing their home, money troubles and health troubles everywhere. we see all this shit and we get nervous, we get worried, we get scared – we start to think we are losing our grip. but that is the test – shit is everywhere trying to pull you in, distract you, make you misstep and fall into the shit. this is the time where you just stay the course, stay focused, keep your grip, don’t make sudden moves. shit will always happen, so you need to work through the shit while keeping your grip or avoid it altogether.
this whole life thing can be confusing and can leave us just sitting there not knowing what to do or what to think about it all. but i think the one rule of thumb for getting through the idea of thinking about life is to not ponder on it too long. if we do ponder on why things happen and what is happening – it will leave us frustrated. this includes all the stages we go through and our kids go through – from youth to adulthood to old age. it is easier to ponder your own trip through these stages because you are personally living in these stages and you won’t feel sad about going from stage to stage – you will accept it rather quickly. you will say “wow, it is going fast and i am getting old” – but you will accept it – you have to. on the other hand – when it comes to accepting your kids going through these same stages – and you are there guiding them through the youth to adulthood stage – it can be more difficult to accept. you don’t want to see them grow up but you do want them to grow up. it not only accentuates your own march to the end but it just hits your heart to let go more and more. that is why we must not ponder on this too much – it will only hurt and confuse us more. you will ponder a bit – but then quickly move on with life. this is out of our control so no need to waste too many feelings in this area. each stage is exciting – so enjoy it, accept it – and don’t ponder for long – not healthy.
when you are young, you don’t reflect on birthdays or any day – no need – just live. but as you get older – as the birthdays pile up and the big day approaches each year – you become apprehensive, you get worried, you lose sleep – and each birthday becomes bitter sweet – yes you are still alive and that is good – but you then start to think about the past and you start to think about the future. for the past – you look back and see if you are satisfied with what you have done and where you are at 39,49,59,69. are you happy with where you sit at each birthday – is this what you thought you would be doing. this then brings on visions of the shortening future – it is no longer halfway – it becomes less than half left – time is running out. will you reach all of your goals before you die. you need to use your remaining time wisely – you need finish the job right – you need to get to a point of calmness – you need to stop worrying – you still need so much – but you won’t get it all – you have to start to understand that – you are not exactly where you thought you would be – yes it is good overall – yes it could be better – yes it could be worse – you can reflect too much or too long – no point – time keeps going and so do you. just get up and do what you need to do, what you want to do, what you have to do. be with those that are good to you – get rid of the rest. they are all racing towards the end just like you – not enough room in your mind or their mind for many other thoughts. the only thought is to keep going.