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22 February 2016

Life Is Short


We had a reminder this weekend about how short life is. It doesn’t really matter what this particular reminder was. We all get them. Every. Single. Day.

Sometimes, they’re subtle and we don’t notice them.

Sometimes, we’re in a rush and we don’t pay attention.

Other times, they’re loud and unmistakable. They stop you in your tracks and you remember -  life is short. So very, very short.

One of the reasons that Scott and I wanted to go off adventuring before "normal" retirement age is that we know life is short. We know health is a gift that can be quickly taken away from you. We want to have adventures that make us smile now while we still have our teeth. {Flossing every day would probably help with that as well.}

As many of you probably know, I'm a bit of a blog junkie. I read all kinds of blogs, but the ones that really resonate with me are those written by people living life a bit differently. Often, it's because they know life is a one time offer and they want to use it well.

Sometimes, they've had a loud and unmistakable reminder that life is short which caused them to re-examine what's really important to them (like this chap who is fulfilling his sailing dream after experiencing health issues). Others have been touched by the loss of a loved one which inspires them and others to live their life fully now, rather than later (like these folks who named their boat after someone they lost).

There's lots of examples out there to remind us that life is short. Do you have one? Have you changed how you live your life as a result? I'd love to hear it and I bet other folks would too.

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22 comments:

  1. The circle of life. You get so long and no more. I've known this since I was very young. That's why I'm so thankful for each new day. It's a gift and I always use it wisely. Thanks for another wonderful reminder. I'll enjoy today even more than usual.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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    1. That's a very good approach - to be thankful for each and every day. Sometimes, I forget and get caught up in nonsense that really doesn't matter in the long run.

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  2. Oh yes, we sure did. Mike's boss died suddenly last year, and then Mike had a health issue that required treatment. He's going to be fine, and we didn't write about it on the blog, but that little reminder stays in the foreground of our minds. We will be retiring earlier than most, but not early enough for us.

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    1. Thanks for sharing this Melissa. When a someone passes away suddenly or has health problems, it can be such a wake-up call. I'm so very glad Mike is going to be fine.

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  3. Five years ago today was the Christchurch earthquake. It's been a day of remembrance here of the 185 people who died, and also the city that we loved and lost. The aftershocks keep on coming too and remind you how you could just be killed by a flying brick at any time Mother Nature feels like rocking your world. The city is still being reconstructed now and the time it is taking to sort insurance issues adds to everyone's stress. But it's things like this that also fuel the sense of adventure. We've been living on adrenaline for such a long time now. It's time to go sailing. http://astrolabesailing.com/2014/07/20/christchurch-and-the-earthquakes/

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    1. Wow. I can't believe it has been five years as of today. I still remember so vividly when we heard about it (I was working in Auckland at the time) - the worry and concern for colleagues, friends and family is still so fresh in my mind. Thanks for sharing this Viki - it's a perfect reminder of the fact that life is short, but also that people can still be so resilient even in the face of devastating natural disasters. Folks from Canterbury are such amazingly people, especially dealing with the ongoing aftershocks (like the one a couple of weeks ago). Definitely get out there and go sailing :-)

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  4. Good reminder. Life is, if not short, then ... fragile. This is (happily) an old post; we celebrate 10 un-guaranteed gifted years in May. http://lifeafloatarchives.blogspot.com/2011/09/alive-for-five.html

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  5. We too - we took a look at "lifespan vs time" and completely changed directions, scrapped the project boat, dipped into our small retirement funds and bought a boat we can sail in NOW - and we're leaving in August, hoping to bump into you and Scott! You just never know...

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    1. Similar to what we did - looked at our finances and made some decisions to take a different direction now, rather than later. Looking forward to seeing your boat in person one of these days.

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  6. I try so hard to try to convince my wife that we should retire as soon as possible and enjoy our lives. A fellow younger than I had a stroke over Christmas vacation, and I had a meeting a few weeks back with another guy who has early onset Parkinson's. What is our goal, to drop at our desks?

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    1. We've seen similar health issues with relatively young people too. It definitely makes you sit back and reassess your priorities, doesn't it.

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    2. For some folks the unknown is more frightening than the known - even if that known is killing them. Perhaps the key there is acknowledging the fear of change, learning to embrace adventure, rather than hide from it? Food for thought... It's been pretty well established now that generally the genders DO approach the unknown very differently: Men/boys step in and say "Let's see what happens if I do this?", while women/girls step back and ask "What will happen if I...", and demand an answer before they take a chance.
      It's possible a partner will be more willing if there is both an agreed upon plan AND an escape plan established ("If this doesn't work we will...").

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    3. Really good food for thought! Sounds a lot like how Scott and I worked it. I agreed to give this whole crazy live on a sailboat and quit our jobs plan a chance, but we tried it out first on a smaller boat in New Zealand so that there was an escape clause if either of us felt it wasn't really for us.

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  7. I'm with you: It doesn't necessarily matter what the reminder is, we get them every day; and the older we become, the more often they arrive. We've been fortunate and have survived without too many scars, but too many of our loved ones haven't been as lucky. Life is short and you only get one chance at it -- that's how we roll. It's not something we think about much, but it is something we know and respect . . . if that makes sense.

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  8. Hubby has a saying, "Don't work a day longer than you have to." We sure are glad we both retired early and started enjoying other things besides working all the time. ☺

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  9. Last year was my big reminder, when I was unwell for much of it and my dad had a stroke. Hope thing for you are not too bad.

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    1. That must have been so hard when you dad had a stroke, especially being so far away. So glad your health has improved. Definitely was a reminder!

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  10. And even when you have decided on an alternative lifestyle (like cruising), disaster can strike and shit happens! 1) You have to face the decision to deal with it locally (say, in Tahiti) or fly back to your country of residence (say, USA). Pricey. 2) You have no idea whether you will ever be able to see your boat/home again 3) You don't say afterwards "Let's leave this conventional life and go sailing", because you were already doing that! 4) You live every day as if it is your last one, just like before. Even if we don't need reminders, they do appear a lot!

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    1. Wow - that must have been a tough one! It's so hard to be far from home and stuff happens that means you have to head back to home. Hopefully, you've been reunited with your boat/home?

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