Thursday, February 19, 2009

Thoughts About Life

So why are we here?  Not here, online, on blogs, making friends with women we may never actually see, but why are we here, here.  Here on this earth.  In this world.  Why are we part of our particular family? The community around us?  Why are we friends with our particular friends and mothers to our particular children?

Heavy stuff for a Thursday morning, wouldn’t you say?  These grand issues aren’t things I take lightly.  I never have.  I had friends in college who were happy-go-lucky, party girls who saw the fun in everything.  I envied them, because I always had that serious bent.  I had my share of fun, for sure, but I’m a list maker, a pros and cons kind of girl.  I knew the possible consequences of whatever the action—whether it was lack of sleep or a jail term—and I weighed those carefully.  At twenty, I felt the weight of the world.  No longer a teenager, I knew it was time to get serious about life, to think about the future, a job, to choose a life.

And at that tender age, I did think that we chose our life.  And for awhile, it felt like I did. 

I chose San Francisco, or it chose me, and to this day I haven’t found a city I prefer. 

I loved the bakery on the corner and the dry cleaner on the next block. 

I loved taking the express bus downtown every morning for work.

I loved that I hardly ever drove, except to visit customers outside of the city, or to take road trips to Napa or Half Moon Bay, or to move my car on street cleaning night.

I loved the hustle and bustle and the sounds of the city.

I loved the quiet of the city on a Sunday morning. 

I loved the view from the top of the hill, looking all the way down to the joggers getting in their afternoon run at the marina. 

I loved Golden Gate Park with its twists and turns and interesting people. 

I loved roaming around, exploring new neighborhoods, and finding new places to love every day.

I loved the smell of that city.

I miss it.

And, yesterday, when I read that Alice Bradley of Finslippy is leaving the suburbs and heading back to Brooklyn, it hit me.  It really hit me.

And so, here I am, wondering not just about San Francisco and all of the other choices I’ve made, but about life.  I’m thinking about how we were designed to interact with one another—with our spouses, our parents, our children, our friends.  I’m thinking about how we each have a different calling, and some of us find it and some of us don’t.  I’m thinking about pain and suffering and about how our experience with them affects our view of the world.  I’m thinking about fairness and unfairness, about justice and equality, about life and death.

That’s a lot of thinking for one morning.  Thanks a lot, Alice.

And what about you?  Did you choose your life?  Did it chose you?  Join me in thinking about it, would you?  Then let me know what you think.  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

photo credits:  KhayaL and Paraflyer


Ashlie- Mommycosm said...

I'll get deep with you.

I think The Universe/God/Flying Spaghetti Monster gives us signs to direct us to where we are supposed to go. In the form of coincidences, chance meetings and serendipity.

We choose to listen or not. Ultimately, we feel happier and more fulfilled when we're following the right path.

How's that?

Heather said...

You know, I think we all could make a case for wanting to live somewhere else or doing something else, and maybe we all should at least try at least once to do/be something/someone different. Or maybe no matter what we do or where we are we'll always wonder if there is something better.

Dana said...

I definetly believe that we all have a specific purpose for being. Being here, where we are and what we are doing. I would say that while I am a mom of young kids, this is exactly where God wants me.
As far as living somewhere, that also depends on a miriad of choices we make to get us to where we are now. College choices, spouse choices, where and how we raise our kids, career paths etc. It goes on forever! It's like the ripples in the water. You never know what choice you make today will effect you 10 years from now!
I am with you on the list maker, pros and cons type of stuff. I need to know that I have disected the decision and it's the best for all involved, not just me.

angi said...

This is deep, and reminds me of the question that I also think about...

Why are we who (the kind of people) we are?

I enjoy spending time thining about these things :)

Meme said...

This is one of the reasons why I love C. S. Lewis so much. He writes what is tucked away in my head and heart. Especially his book entitled The Case for Christianity. All of your questions are the ones he asks and answers in that book. In fact, I believe at one time or another, we all ask them. Those happy go lucky girls that you went to college asked them too, just in a different way.

Have a great weekend!!

Susiej said...

Hmmmm. I think as we approach mid-life, no matter what we've chosen, we start to question what we've done, why, and probably wish more. Now that we have the experience to see where our choices led, we now wish we had taken another path... not because we don't like our path... we just want something different. A new experience to add to our dwindling time, and we fear we're coming to the end of our time, and our options further limited.

But, it's not that way. When I think of all of the older-than-me people in my life, I never hear them say they feel limited in what they do with their time, they're doing it. We're more limited now (because of the ages of our children) than we will be when we're older. We just can't imagine that we will make new choices in the future, we will have chances again. We will.