What’s it all mean? – End of the Day for July 31, 2014

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There are times in your life when you suddenly find yourself asking that existential question, “What does it all mean?” I have been wondering lately if I have wasted a large portion of my life on things that didn’t really matter. First, there are the silly little quirks and foibles I mentioned in the “Stranger in a Strange Land” post. These have stopped me from doing a lot of things over the years and I begin to wonder if there wasn’t a better path — or better paths —  to be followed. Then there are all the things I spent my time on over the years, often many years of focus and work. I thought, and still think in most cases, that that time was well spent, useful and productive, but when you see where these projects end up, you have to wonder if it was really worth it?

I suppose questions like this are only part and partial of being a certain age. You need a lot of time and experience in order to be able to look back with any sort of perspective. The worst part is, though, that while you may have perspective to understand the past, it is just that — the past. You can’t go back and change any of the decisions that brought you to where you are today. The best you can hope to do is learn from your past and use this knowledge to build a better future. I guess this is where I am today.

So today was filled with thoughts about endings and beginnings and next steps along the way. I must admit, it can feel really crappy thinking about ending something that you have been working on for over a decade. While I had no great ideas where this project might have led when I started it, I know I wanted it to become more than it has. Instead, I think it has been limping along for quite a while, more out of habit than any real possibility of success. Of course, wild success was necessary to keeping the project going. I helped a few people along the way and it really didn’t take anything more than my time, so each time I reevaluated the project over the years, I was able to find some reason to continue. So it goes with many long running projects. They sort of continue under their own power.

Sun and Moon - Photo-A-Day for October 18, 2006

Finding new beginnings is more problematic, I find. On the worse days, I can feel like nothing I dream up is really worth doing. Given the poor success rate of my previous projects, I can be very reluctant to start anything new. This is a horrible place to find yourself, though, at least if you are me. I have a constant drive to be learning and creating something new. When that runs up against my own misgivings, worries and fears, it can be a difficult situation. I end up with a day like today — forcing myself to do things instead of wanting to do them. This is the way I typically work through these times. Keep plodding forward until traction grips again. There are times when I wonder if I will ever find that traction again and that is scary. What if there isn’t anything after this? What if this is ALL there is? Yikes! That doesn’t bear thinking about  unless I just want force myself to crawl into a cave for the rest o the my life.

Tomorrow is another day, as Scarlett O’Hara said in Gone with the Wind. She had at least that one thing right. Each day is another opportunity to start over, start moving, start something new and end something old. So, here’s to tomorrow and all the other tomorrows to follow. They give us hope and allow us to keep moving forward, even if we don’t really feel like it right now.

Previously on End of the Day:

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