Fun experience the other day:
6am. The butt crack of dawn. And I’m in a cab to the airport.
And the driver is blaring some Caribbean reggae music.
Like I think he was trying to seance Bob Marley or something because this ish was loud.
But honestly, while a lot of other people probably would have been annoyed, I frankly loved it.
This guy was just so all about it.
He was like jammin’ in his seat, dancing, singing along sometimes. It was really entertaining.
I have never seen someone with so much life, – so much joy – especially not at 6am.
And ever since seeing the life that guy had in him, I have been more observant. More aware, more in tune with those moments that I’ve felt truly alive in my own life.
I was just on vacation in the middle of nowhere up by the border of Canada. Deep in the woods. On a lake. No cell service. Barely any internet. Just my family. The lake. And the bears.
I mean, this place is remote.
We’re talking, you search it on Google Maps, and there isn’t any data on it.
I know — how this place escaped the government satellites that curate that shiz is some high powered ninja stealthiness.
But I digress.
I was whizzing across the empty lake on the jet-ski with it going full throttle and I felt it. The wind crisp in my face, reminding me that I’m alive. Life.
Watching my little niece splash in the water. Hearing her squeal with joy as she swam and was delighted in by her family. Life.
Sitting with my mom under the stars, in awe at the magnitude of the universe and God’s incredible imagination. Life.
Laughing with my brothers around the pool table and getting a side ache from the non-stop laughs. Life.
These were moments this trip that I just had to take a mental picture of.
They were times that I was all there. Just like my cabbie – I was in the moment, soaking it all up.
And it made me remember that there were definitely times — even at this very lake house that we’ve had since I was a little girl — when I was not truly living.
When I was a shell of myself, trapped in my anorexia.
And it’s remembering that time of just barely existing, that makes me truly appreciate living abundantly. Living and grabbing onto life with both hands and squeezing out all the juice.
I think a lot of times, we feel that in order to be living life in abundance, we have to be hitting the hottest nightclubs, or driving the swankiest car, or wearing the most expensive kicks, or throwing the most Pinterest-worthy birthday or bachelorette party.
We think that living is tied to the material.
But I was talking with my sweet little three-year-old niece at the end of the trip, and I asked her what her favorite part of the trip was.
And without hesitation, she said it was building rock projects with us on the beach.
Not the fancy Wii game. Not the latest and greatest toy with all the bells and whistles.
But just quality time with her loved ones. Literally playing with rocks. #FlinstoneStyle
I think living in NYC has really awakened in me a deep gratitude for the time I do have with my family. We have been through a lot together, obviously, and there is no one else that knows me the way they do.
And living in the city, I have had a lot of exciting experiences. Once in a life time, really. But no matter what, the moments when I feel like I’m truly living are when I am with my family.
Maybe it’s laughing up a storm over some beer pong in the basement, or maybe it’s just a quiet cup of coffee with my mom when we’re talking about life.
At the end of the day, everyone experiences that rush of life differently. Maybe it’s through music like my cabbie. Maybe it’s through dance, or art. Maybe it’s through playing sports or running, or taking care of kids, or being with family.
Whatever it is, when you find it, hold onto it. Because that’s how we’re supposed to live.
“I have come that you may have life and have it to the full.” John 10:10
So thanks, Mr. Cabbie, for so exuberantly demonstrating living. I applaud your joyful existence. Especially when I was zombie eyed at 6am.
You reminded me to truly live. To be alive.