CFAES Give Today
OSU Extension

College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

August 21, 2020 - 2:52pm --

As a child I participated in a theatrical production about fire. The production has three movements. At one point we danced around a pile of TVs on stage to represent a large bonfire. Later we were asked to escape a burning building. When asked what I would take from my home in a fire I quickly answered car keys. Apparently at 8 years old I was going to drive away from that burning mess.

As I relax in front of the final bonfire before I close on my current home, I feel a sense of freedom and peace. I’m going to spend the next several weeks in limbo, but this is my chance to live in the moment. For the next few weeks I don’t have to worry about taxes, insurance, gas, water or electric bills. It’s not going to be cheap to live in the moment but, for the next month- I just get to live. It’s kind of exciting.

Every dollar I spend doesn’t have to be an investment in my future, every thought doesn’t have to revolve around the date a debt is paid. For the first time in a long time I feel light.

Living in the moment can be very limiting. It’s a concern for anyone who plans to live past the age of productivity. But, once you reach maturity, no one is guaranteed a life beyond working.

Although this pandemic has been like a wet blanket on a summer that was supposed to be fun and exciting, the forced downtime has proved to be good for many of us. We have had a chance to re-evaluate our priorities, to experience the sorrowful and hard reality that life is fragile, and to realize that we were living in boxes of our own creation.

As I prepare to move, I realize that I have made a great first step in letting go of the worldly possessions that have been weighing me down and boxing me in.

What matters most to me are the memories I forged with those I loved, and while some items remind me of their love, it is not the items which matter, it is how I remember them.

When I’m gone it is not the stuff I want someone to cling to, it is how I made them feel. When my life comes to an end I hope that others say I inspired peace in their lives, I hope they continue to drive forward my vision of helping good people do great things. I hope that my life, as part of theirs, is remembered as gift.