This Is Your Life

Due to a plumber visit this morning to replace some old valves in my house, I enjoyed a half day away from my office {cage}. Not wanting to give up a full 8 hours of precious PTO {Paid Time Off} without a good reason when there is so much to be done at work, I begrudgingly got in the car and headed back to work this afternoon. As I soaked up the sunshine through the sunroof, smelled the perfectly mild spring air, and gazed at the budding trees and rich green fields, I once again slipped into my yearly spring romanticism. Perhaps it is the beauty of spring or the increase in sunshine and the associated rise in positive brain chemicals, but every spring I get a renewed wistfulness and urge to leave behind the boring left-brain life of logic and responsibility and create art, read poetry, make music, and explore.

At some point during the 25 minute drive to my office today, I fell deeply into one of those delicious daydreams about what I would do with my life if money were no object – if I won the lottery or wrote a bestselling novel or inherited millions of dollars – the land I’d buy, the house I’d build, the preparations and investments I’d make, the places I’d go, the things I’d do for friends and family, the car I’d drive, and what I’d do for a living: write and paint, paint and write, explore, and do great things. I debated whether or not I’d quit my engineering job immediately if such good fortune struck, or whether I’d play it cool and stick with it for at least a year just to be prudent. I realized the latter was probably unrealistic… I would quit immediately and devote all my time and energy to building a new life.

It was a wonderfully sweet dream. I was on my balcony with a canvas and easel overlooking a grassy golden field when I was rudely awakened by my auto-pilot switching off as I pulled into my handicapped parking spot. It was at this moment when my free spirit repossessed my bound body that I realized the radio was playing the chorus to the Switchfoot song, “This is Your Life”:

“This is your life; are you who you wanna be?

This is your life; are you who you wanna be?

This is your life, is it everything you dreamed that it would be when the world was younger and you had everything to lose?”

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