1,123 Miles SW of Wolf Run Lake
(Belle Valley, Ohio)
Friday, June 27, 2020 (05:59am)
Dear Friend and Reader,
(Hi Dee Dee!)
I don’t know what came over me.
Life happened. I got out of the one habit. Even though it brings me so much satisfaction.
It wasn’t a conscious decision.
Hell, I didn’t even notice until the other night.
Out in the back yard, talking to my garden, I looked up and to a big Texas sky sprinkled with clouds.
It had been raining pretty loudly for the previous three days.
The white puffy clouds indicated a break in the action. I decided to go paddling the next morning. But, that’s not the habit I’m talking about here.
Our back yard faces east, so I moseyed on out to the front.
**** Note to self: Make Damn Sure the house we buy has a big porch.
Where was I?
Annette, grabbed the dogs, and we all went outside to enjoy the sunset.
It was magical. The sky really put on a show for us. I teared up a little.
The hues of blue dial up to teal. Gold shimmered on the bottoms of the clouds. Deep shades of pinks and purples filled the neighborhood of Preston Lakes.
It took me back to 2013.
Dad sat on the front porch of the single-wide trailer. He wrestled with a crossword and chewed on his Swisher Sweet. Cigar stench invaded summer breeze.
Annoyed. My attention shifted from the book in my hand to the old man. Over his shoulder the sun was setting.
I’d spent the day on my paddle board. It was the first day I touched the bridge. A 12 mile round trip.
Exhausted, but the sight inspired me to get up and get a more expansive view.
The sound of the screen door startled the old man.
He looked up. Saw my face. Laughed.
And said,“Gotdamn boiy, you look like you won the lottery.”
…. it’s almost time for the Sunrise.
I’m back. Cloudy morning. Still worth it.
That day in 2013, I convinced the old man to put down the paper and look into the horizon.
Then explained to him a few minutes on why my face looked like I’d won the lottery. It didn’t take long. He got it.
We sat in silence.
The sky put on a spectacularly moving show.
It was a magical moment.
At one point, the sky burst into flames. The old man looked over at me. A tear rolled down his cheek — I grinned, nodded, and pointed my chin out at the horizon.
As the light faded, we threw some fuel in the fire pit, and sat down with some beers. (Non-Alcoholic for me).
Dad started off by saying
“I don’t even remember ever taking the time to watch a sunset. “
He then went on a little rant, ribbed me a little bit about how he’s always told people ‘that boy ain’t right.’
Then. It happened. The second time I saw that man cry. The first one was the day his mom died. The third: when he thanked me for living in a nursing home with him just before hospice intervened.
That time in 2013, he apologized to me for everything.
He said he’d been reading my book. Jotting down notes. And really thinking about everything I wrote, and how he wished he knew it before.
Through the tears he choked.Mikey D McAuley
“It was supposed to be the other way around.
I was supposed to teach you how to live.
And, I think it’s time you left Ohio again.”
I have no idea why that, of all memories came back to me the other night.
But, it did.
And it broke my heart again.
I love that feeling. (Rawness. Vulnerability.)
Sometimes I forget that I don’t want my heart to heal.
I don’t want the Shell to harden again. Every time I lose touch with that pain, I forget to slow down, and focus on what’s important. I miss so many magical moments in the rush to someday.
One of the biggest lessons of 2013/2018 (of my life so far)— the hardest one to apply daily is that…
…you shouldn’t waste your life worrying about things, people, and opinions that don’t matter, especially when you are in the presence of people who do.
Time is short.
No matter how long we get, it won’t be enough.
Don’t waste it.
Do whatever you have to in order to get ahold of your own attention.
I mean, really contemplate what is meaningful and important to you.
Live your life purposefully.
Take care of your mind, your body, and master your craft.
And make the time to watch the sunset, or get up and watch the sunrise. Or both. Take the time to remind yourself that awe and wonder is freely available.
Open your mind up.
We live in a magical Universe.
And it is the most magical time in the history of mankind.
Obviously, if you read the news or get on social media, (collectively) we still have some work to do.
Create the space for you to do your work, by carving out some time to get lost in some magical moments, so you can find your core self.
Listen to the voice of reason and wisdom in you.
It’s beneath all the noise.
I hope this helps,
Love your face!
PS About Sunrises…
When I started my Instagram, it was a photo essay of the sunrise. I wanted to show the perspective change of each morning, from the same spot. You can check that out here if you want.
PPS If you think someone else should read this, here’s a link to the blog version. I post these every week for people who don’t want emails. It would help out the mission if you shared to social media.