Your life is happening today.
"Life is not a dress rehearsal."
- Rosie Tremain
Life is not a run-up, it's not a thing that is going to happen to you some day. You must live the life you want today. It is now. It is in every breath, every experience, every laugh.
Life happens in the shit moments, just as much as it happens in the good ones. It happens when you are working, when you are sleeping, when you are making dinner.
I lived the last few years of my life not living. I wasn't really awake and enjoying things as they happened. Between a stressful job in a small start-up and home/family obligations, it often felt like life was happening to me and I didn't get much say in it at all. People-pleasing, working overtime, worried about money: Going Through The Motions.
Cue my quarter-life crisis (or Saturn Return, as I've heard others call it): I found out about two separate (thankfully not-too-serious) health issues and needed surgery for both. It definitely got me thinking but still, I scooped myself back together and just kept chugging. Until last year, when I finally went on holiday and wound up with tonsillitis (twice!). I was at a wedding, surrounded by people I had not seen in years, and couldn't even speak to them. I was so run-down and stressed out, it was then I realised that shit needed to change. I had to well and truly check myself. Was this all worth it? What am I doing with my life? What do I want to be doing? What do I choose?
I decided it was time to do things that I chose to do. To explore life and create. And to make life happen today, not some day in the future (that would likely never come, or come far too late!).
I've made a few changes. The first one was to quit my job. Then with spare time, I started to focus on the things I enjoyed: yoga and ceramics. But probably the toughest change I have made is to choose to sit in the unknown. I have resisted the urge to get another real job, even though the financial security sure would be nice. I have taken up a few short-term or part-time roles here and there, however am still unsure what the future holds. And while I normally would have found that terrifying and unthinkable, I'm learning to sit with it and see it as a wide open door. I get to choose how I want to live my life, and that is a beautiful gift.
You have to find a way to live a little each day and to find the joy in small things. Slow down, smile to yourself, know that you can find peace in any moment.