Saturday, Feb 20, 2016
I’ve spent a large part of my day reading a book. I also caught up with a friend who, at 50 years old, has been retired for 2 weeks now. He decided that there is something else for him “out there”, and to continue doing what he has been doing didn’t make sense for him any longer.
The emotions he is experiencing, and shared with me, are pretty much the same one’s I’ve had and still experience. He asked me if I still feel like I am on vacation, and I do. After working for so many years in such a traditional way…40+ hrs a week, regular schedule, paid holidays and vacations, it’s hard to shake off.
He experienced a profound moment, an emotional release…aka sobbing, to what was the end of something that he did for a very long time and was very good at. I did too. It makes me realize the human condition is not so singularly unique.
I am a man who knows how to work hard, and knows how to do a good job for those I work for and for those who depend on me. Over time…day after day, month after month, and year after year… a comfortable familiarity develops with the people and the processes I share in doing my work.
When that stops, when that moment of finality registers, it becomes a moment of sadness that gets released as a huge sob…or at least that’s how it happened for me. It sounds like my friend had a similar experience.
In that moment all the good, right, and rational reasons to move on don’t matter. The sob becomes a release of all the shared experiences, feelings, and connections with the people I’ve consistently been with for almost 20 years.
We are not islands passing through life. I touch the lives of others and am touched by others’ lives. Our connection matters. I can dismiss it, downplay it, or disregard it…but in the end, my connection to you and everyone else becomes the best and most important thing in my life.
Our shared human condition is our place of common ground, and from that place anything is possible.