A few years back, I distinguished that I feared dying because I did not risk falling in love. Discovering that about myself freed me up. Oh yeah, I still fear the “undiscovered country,” yet in a far, far lesser way.
Now, I embrace my mortality as an inevitable human design. In a sense, I’m even grateful for it. Mortality is the possibility of purpose.
Over the years, I discovered that I will do what I love for as long as possible. That I see the greater than in others. Have compassion. Be kind. Be nice. Great people like Mom, Sensei and John have blessed my journey. That I’ve been able to bestow their gifts to me on to others is a true blessing. That I’ve been able to make a difference in this world, gives me satisfaction and a sense of peace.
Like all of us, my story shall end. It’s my wish that others take what’s useful, discard what’s not and create their own Art, their own life. Perhaps, the world is a little greater than when I came into it. I shall leave that for others to define. I know I’m in good hands.
I’m a big fan of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Dwayne is the Biggest Movie Star on Planet Earth. He won the MTV Generations Award 2019. Going way back, The Rock was the WWE World Wrestling Champion, who would become King of the Movies.
Conventional Hollywood had no template for the half-Black, half Samoan 6’ 4”, 275-pound chiseled Rock. They tried to remake him into something else, something familiar. Even something ordinary. That ain’t Dwayne. Dwayne went along with this recreation for a few years. Then he thought, “WTF! I’m going to be the best version of myself.”
At the MTV Movie Awards, Dwayne said, “The most powerful thing we can be is ourselves.” Amen, Rock. Be kind. Have compassion. He also said that it’s incumbent upon us to “Bring everyone with you.” We create our communities of greater than we know. In closing, Dwayne recited a meaningful quote from his childhood, “It’s nice to be important. It’s more important to be nice.” Rock, Amen.
Through my life lived, like Dwayne, I discovered: Be kind, just because. The world just works that way. Yeah, sometimes the world can be unkind and doesn’t seem to like you back. Still have faith. Have faith in yourself. I can be the best version of myself.
So what if my best version of me never falls madly, deeply in love? Would that be a wasted life? Should I fear dying, again? Perhaps, not. I believe we all have to make peace with our mortality. I continually reconcile that.
I’ve experienced darker times and suffering, and have come through okay. I got that when I forgive and love me, then I can make a profound difference for others.
So maybe, I don’t discover the woman who’s the great love of my life in my lifetime. At least I get the value, the vitality of that. Yet, not having that doesn’t define me entirely. I’m so very grateful for the life lived, and the people I’ve had the privilege of sharing this journey.
I hold out hope that the love of my life is still a possibility. I’m not at all attached to the outcome, either. I continue my online dating with Match dot com. Given who I am, what I have to work with, I’ll get one authentic response for every 50 messages I send out. Yet, I continue to fail, daring bravely.
I met Joanne in my Saturday morning Step Aerobics class. I believe we have been taking that class together for about a year or so. Joanne, I believe is in her 50’s. Yes, age-appropriate for me.
Joanne is the beautiful, tall, slender Chinese woman with long black hair. She told me that because of her joints, she favors one the instructor’s class. Hence, I usually see her every other week.
That voice in my head has said, “Dude, she’s out of your league.” Yet, for the moment I tell my voice, “Shut the fuck up!”
About a month ago, after Saturday morning class I was in the weight machine area watching the mounted TV screen. We had a substitute Aerobics Instructor. She was awesome. Had a great workout.
Joanne runs over to me and grabs my arm. She wanted to know the schedule for our regular instructors. I told her that Aerobics Instructors Val and Lois alternate on even and odd Saturdays. Really.
We talked for a bit. I asked if she danced, because she moved like a dancer in step class. She said that she takes “traditional Indian dance” here at the YMCA. WTF? Also very cool.
She asked if I was going to be in class next week. I replied, “Yeah.” She smiled, “I’ll see you next Saturday!” She ran back to the aerobics room.
Recently, I walked into Saturday morning class late. Val was teaching, so the class was packed. Joanne said, “You can work out here.” She made space for me to set up my “step” next to her. We had fun. Talked in between breaks.
She bolted right after class, so I didn’t get to talk. Not taking it personally. I could, perhaps? I kid. As Sensei would tell me, “Wait it out.” Patience, Grasshopper. Yet, don’t wait too long. I’ll do my best here. I’ll also be like my Hero Kawhi Leonard: Chill. What happens, shall happen. Just saying, again.
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