Death and dying

I learned last night that a twitter friend of ours, Rhonda Hitchcock (@RhondaUSA), passed away on Monday. We weren’t very close but we exchanged tweets about technology occasionally.

Rhonda was only 40 years old and that really struck a cord with me because I’m 39 this year. That makes me feel pretty panicky because there’s a lot that I still want to do in life.  I might go to sleep tonight and not wake up. I’ll have never lived in Nashville or tried to live the urban lifestyle I want to try and live. I would have never of went to Europe, or tried to hike the  AT or get back into cycling… well you get the picture.

Several weeks ago I came across an article, Bonnie Ware: Top 5 Regrets of Dying, which immediately came to mind when I heard this news.  I can tell you, that even as a 38 year old, I have the same #1 regret. I wish I could live more true to myself instead of the life others expect of me. For the majority of my life, I’ve been pretty self sacrificing… I think a lot of men think they’re supposed to be that way in order to be considered a man.

My main take-aways are:

  1. Practice saying no – I’m going to try and be less self sacrificing. I’m going to do the things that interests me, even if that means that might inconvenience other people.
  2. Be happy and find joy in the things that I am able to do – Yeah, driving 4 hours a day sucks but if I’m always day dreaming about the life I don’t have, the life I do have will pass me by.

It’s cliche to say, but life is truly short. I’m going to endeavor to live my life more like I’ve always wanted. I encourage you to do the same.

2 Replies to “Death and dying”

  1. I saw a clip of Ayn Rand the other day that echoed some of what you said in this post. It struck a chord with me, because I did customer service for most of my professional life and making other people was and has been a big part of my character for a long time. What I’ve discovered is that while I do derive some gratification and pleasure from helping others, I am often left unfulfilled and not as successful as I want to be while also being disappointed with how little people tend to give back.

    Anyway, I’m sorry to hear about your friend. Perhaps the clip will help to codify the right way to be selfish. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CoAKer8lfds

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