The Elusive Fresh Start
Anxiously awaiting the newest episode of Mad Men to appear on my Netflix queue I resorted to re-watching the previous season. One particular episode caught my attention as mixed within the whirl of melodrama was some wisdom. It went something like this: Attempting to explain her behavior, character A says to Character B, “I just wanted to have a fresh start.” In response character B says, “There are no fresh starts there is just life.”
This made me wonder, how many of us are waiting for a fresh start? How many of us look back and when we find our history no longer palatable, wish for a magical restart button to eradicate the chains of our pasts and give us the new beginning we crave? Is there such a thing as a fresh start or in the words of the erudite character B is there ‘just life’? Maybe we are waiting for other things too; waiting until we reach a certain age, a certain dress size, get married, finish school, retire… In this waiting we may actually be holding up the very life we desire.
Life can be disappointedly anti-climactic as it is formed upon a long continuum rather than a cacophonous crescendo. We don’t win the fresh start lottery. We create the new life we want by making changes in our current one. We do this by setting our intentions and putting into practice those things we want the most. Change takes practice and we can only practice through living not by waiting or wishing. Even with a dramatically pronounced transition such as marriage, our new life doesn’t just appear after the wedding ceremony. It may take us years to really know how to be in this new marred life and this knowing is based upon the time now, the time before, and the time to come. This is life.
If we want a bucolic retirement to gain a peaceful and relaxed life, why not incorporate these elements into our present lives? Though not quite as idyllic as our retirement vision, we can start to make these changes now. We can relax by scheduling it into what we already do, making it a necessary task amongst others. Though our over stimulating city life may not be conducive to the peace we seek, we can practice how we communicate with those close to us to create a peaceful environment within our own homes. Waiting in life equates to wasting life.