I’ve taken the day to edit photos and video and get some other stuff done, emails checked etc. In doing so, sitting here with my fresh hot coffee watching the last two days of photos pop up on the screen I started reflecting on this whole “adventure”.
This past week or so, hell, this past year has shown us more celebrity deaths than I can count. The ones on my radar have mostly been musicians that I admired and respected. Lemmy, Glen Frey, David Bowie, Prince etc. However there is one very recent passing that didn’t make the headlines. However this one that not only hits very close to home but also drives home the reasons why I’m out here doing what I’m doing. Simply, life is too fucking short.
Gillian was a beautiful and talented guitarist from my second home town of Vancouver Canada. She wasn’t famous, she wasn’t in her 60s or 70s. In fact she was quite younger than myself. I didn’t know her. Simply met her a couple of times, knew her band and witnessed her incredible talent on occasion. I don’t know any particulars of her passing but I know by the outpouring of love and tribute on social media that she will be greatly missed by many.
So what does this all mean? People die everyday, some suffer, some don’t. Some of the good die young, some of the evil live long and prosper. Some don’t have a chance to rise to their full potential, some surpass it. How does it all work out? I don’t have any answers to any of those questions. It’s like asking what makes someone like me, born into a comfortable lower-middle class lifestyle with loving (albeit semi dysfunctional) parents while somewhere else someone was born, perhaps at the exact same time, into poverty, slavery or worse. Who delegates this and where can I take it up with them?
I guess the convoluted point I’m trying to make is that we all need to start directing our focus on what makes us shine. Especially true for those of us who at various levels have won the “existence lottery” and have it good. We have no excuses. I know we all like to think we have many, but we don’t. Sure, maybe we’re not wealthy, are buried by debt, aren’t perfectly healthy or don’t have multitudes of extra time but somewhere within our lives is our chance to take the good hand we’ve been dealt and do something substantial with it. The potential to leave a mark on the world like Bowie did or simply a mark on a whole music scene like Gillian did. It’s there within us all.
I’m not saying we all must dedicate ourselves to becoming great musicians or artists or entrepreneurs. All I’m saying is that we all have a limited unknown amount of days on this planet and if we aren’t carving out a little time everyday to do whatever it is that makes us shine then we are doing a great disservice to not only ourselves but to our friends and family and hell, maybe even the world.
So find that thing that makes your day, find that thing that fills you up and make time for it everyday. Maybe it’s inventing new recipes in your kitchen at home, maybe it’s tinkering and inventing solutions to small problems, maybe it’s working on the screenplay or book idea you have. If it makes you shine and makes your soul happy, DO IT. That shine will expand and translate into others and they will remember. Perhaps working a little each day on that shine will lead to you doing what you’ve always wanted to do and and maybe when your last day arrives you will be remembered and missed by millions like Bowie and Prince, or perhaps a few thousand like Gillian. The point is, that energy will leave a mark and you will be remembered for your brand of shine. So please, shine.