I made a decision a few weeks back, nearly coinciding with new years, 2011, although, by no means a New Years resolution, to start nurturing my love of movies, music and literature. Since then, I've spent about 2 hours each day watching movies and catching up on documentaries and about the same amount of time reading. I haven't yet picked up the guitar again, but that will be happening soon as well (the tips of my fingers ache thinking about it). I've gone through these phases while I've aged, I keep thinking, "I've passed my prime." It's been happening since I was 15. I thought that by not running cross-country my sophomore and junior year of high-school that my career as a runner was over. Then, I tried out for the team my senior year and ran the fastest 5k of my life. I have a hard time convincing myself that I'm young. I always think I want to be older, wiser, more mature, more established and then I get incredibly nostalgic for my youth. I've heard my grandfather say on many occasions, "Anton, I'm rich enough to have what only the young can enjoy." I desperately want to squeeze all of the enjoyment out of every moment of my life, from now until I die. When I sleep, I want to sleep long and deep. When I laugh, I want to laugh hard. When I run, I want to run fast. And on and on.
I was thinking the other day, what if, at a certain age in my youth, I set out to learn skills that would make me an incredible spy. What if I spent a year in Spain learning Spanish, a year in Russia learning Russian and a year in China, learning a dialect of Chinese? What if I learned Krav Maga, how to pilot a plane and fly a helicopter? What if I altered my looks and worked out until I was chiseled and great looking? I think that by 27, the age I am now, I could have mastered these things, even if I didn't start my quest until after college. I would be James Bond. I would be Indiana Jones. And then what? I would still be subject to age, disease and chance. I would still get old and die. This is the direction my thoughts always go. They crescendo and then they hit the reality of being human.
You and I are going to die.
Not only are we going to die, but we only have a certain window of youth and maturity, in which to really accomplish anything great. So what is there? There is family. If I were to get married sometime soon and have children rather quickly, around age fifty, I'd be sending my children out into the world so that hopefully, they would be able to make their own incomes and eventually take care of me as I become elderly. They might have children of their own and then as a grandfather, I could look out upon my legacy and have great pride for the generations that God had raised through me. And really, I don't think it gets any better. Human populations are growing and the earth's resources are getting used up. Our bodies evolved to live on earth, not any other planet, so this globe is all we have. To live a good life, it takes an incredible amount of foresight and responsibility. That, and often, common grace (the idea that God lets us keep living, even though we're selfish and don't necessarily deserve it). So as I'm still relatively young, I'm going to keep pondering these questions and continue in my quest to live a humble, good life.