What if it all fell apart for you? Everything was lost…gone. It was over.
But then it wasn’t.
What if – by some fortuitous freak of nature, fate, or technology – you cheated the ultimate equalizer. What would you do with your second chance on life? Your Second Take?
Today marks two years since a ventricular arrhythmia nearly took me out. Dancing one minute, on the floor the next. But for the marvels of modern machinery, my family and friends would be remembering two years since I passed into the great unknown.
Enough gloom, though. I was presented with the big “What if?” So, what have I done with my Second Take?
I started this blog, SecondTakes.com
I created more blog posts, photos and personal video projects in the past year than during any previous year…ever
I celebrated 25 years with Michelle, at a U2 concert in Chicago
I relished 731 additional days (and counting) with Mallory and Anna, with my sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, in laws, friends and complete strangers I’ve met along the way
Unfortunately, I buried two very special people, my mother-in law and father-in law
Fortunately, I was given the opportunity to eulogize both of them, an honor I never take lightly and appeciate to no end
I saw Anna graduate from high school
I’ve watched Mallory and Anna begin to hone their professional and creative skills at the University of Cincinnati
I’ve aquiesced, now wearing UC gear along side my Xavier gear
I scripted, directed and helped produce one of our city’s All Star Game celebrations on Fountain Square
I read books I’ve wanted to read
I bought two really cool fountain pens and am now, I suppose, a pen-head (not pinhead, dammit)
I watched the International Space Station fly over my house six times
I hosted parties in the presence of many a good friend
I walked several thousand miles with Pudge the World’s Greatest Dog
I’ve written some poetry, most of which is muck…but what the hell. Giving it a shot.
I’ve welcomed every single morning with a “Hello” from the front porch, as Pudge searched doggedly for just the right spot to go
I’ve learned that virtually nothing matters more than what I’ve listed above
I’ve learned that stress is self induced, and that I can have more control over how I respond to adverse situations
I’ve learned that negativity is too much of a downer for me, and that I can remove complicated situations and people from my life
I’ve learned that I don’t need position or money or stuff or friends in high places to create a life of fulfillment
I’ve learned to appreciate every single day and the experiences that come with each
If you’re reading this, you’ve found something worth while in my writing. For that, I’m infinitely grateful. Not because of fame, fortune, or all the (non) money that comes with writing an under-the-radar blog. But because something I’ve said before resonated enough that you came back. Or perhaps you’re here for the first time, in which case I hope you enjoy the read and return again.
I’m on a journey to live a purposeful life. I’ll doubt I’ll ever find what I’m searching for, but I’ll enjoy every moment along the way.
By the way, I’m walking in the American Heart Association’s Heart Mini this weekend. The goal is to wipe out the #1 killer of Americans. I survived, so I’d like others to experience the coolness of a Second Take.