I returned from a two-day business trip last evening, and made it home from the airport approximately 7:20pm. Usually, I strive to serve dinner to Sandy, Max, and Morgan (aka the three dogs in the house) around 6:30pm in a routine I lovingly call “doggy dinner”, so they were ready to eat immediately after we finished reacquainting with lots of hugging, licking, and barking. I scurried about getting all of the constituent dinner elements together while they took their usual positions about the kitchen. As they waited patiently for me to finish my work and serve the fruit of my labor, I engaged them in pre-dinner banter (yeah, I am completely insane when I am within 10 feet or less of a dog).
After serving dinner, I stood back and listened to the sounds of the three eating, and I realized that it is a very comforting sound. Regardless of the stress of the day, and whatever craziness might be happening in the background, the sound of them eating dinner is one of the most satisfying sounds ever.
As long as I can pull doggy dinner together, and they are happy to eat it, my life is complete.
Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to help pack a friend’s personal belongings as they prepare for an upcoming move to a new city and new apartment, and I was very intrigued by the variance of items that they have collected and retained over the years. I’m sure that every item has its own story or associated memory, or once had value that has long since dissipated.
The experience led me to think about how someone might feel if they were helping to pack up my personal belongings. What items hold value for me that would seem like just another piece of junk to them? I try not to be a packrat, and I go through my accumulated “stuff” on occasion to see what has since outlived its usefulness, but I’m now curious about how many items have managed to survive those occasional purges when they should have been used, recycled, donated, or simply thrown away years ago?
If something has remained unseen in a box in my garage for several years, does it still have sufficient “sentimental value” that justifies its continued residency or is it a candidate for appropriate disposal?
It is hard to believe that it is July 10 already – this year is flying by! Between the commitments of my fulltime job, and the rigors of completing a master’s degree, it was necessary for me to drop several personal activities from my daily/weekly routine, and blogging on this site was one of them. However, on May 31, I graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a Master of Aeronautical Science degree, so I can scratch that off my bucket list. My work commitments have settled down a little too, so I am beginning to rebuild my personal life and getting back to those abandoned activities. At least some of them…not every abandoned activity offers sufficient value to engage in again.
I subscribe to the life principle that “if you want what you’ve never had, you need to do what you’ve never done”. I wanted to pursue that degree, and graduate in two years with a 4.0 GPA, and I achieved those goals. The path to my success was not easy, and there were many occasions during those two years when I questioned my motivations for pursuing the degree, sought excuses not to study that night, or wondered if the personal sacrifices that I was making were too much to ask.
Now post-degree, I am trying to enjoy my newly found leisure time (and my dog Sandy is thoroughly enjoying that her dad is now free to engage in nightly walks) but the beat of that life principle is continuous and unceasing. So I’m currently determining what else I’ve never had and now want, and deciding what I need to start doing in order to secure those things. Nevertheless, those nightly walks with Sandy are sacrosanct.