I’m not a big consumer of news, especially not on the weekend so I’ve only just found out that Peter Roebuck, my favourite cricket correspondent has died. Death gets to you. Or in the words of Steve Jobs, ‘death is life’s change agent’.
25 years ago I had a malignant melanoma cut out of my right thigh. Although in my head I knew I had dodged a bullet, my youthful heart didn’t really think too deeply about it. A couple of weeks ago I had another one cut out of my left thigh. It’s a bit like having a baby … every one says that until you’ve had one you have no idea how it changes your perspective on what matters in life. Having cancer in your body is a bit the same I reckon.
Maria is away so rather than hang out with her, which is typical weekend stuff for us, I’ve spent a few sessions in one of our hammocks. Don’t you love the gentle rocking? Thinking. Snoozing. Now I’m at the kitchen bench (Sunday afternoon). I’m loving the sound of Bob Dylan wafting through the late afternoon. The smell of my red wine in a plain glass lubricates the harmonica. I’ve loved watching movies til late with Rachel. I’ve loved taking Johanna for a swim and watching her do butterfly better than I can. I’ve loved having the cover off the barbeque and making simple but really good food. I’ve loved eating the raspberry and white chocolate muffins that Heidi made yesterday. I even loved ironing Johanna’s school uniform for tomorrow.
(Dylan is singing about the great reversals – perhaps with Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount as inspiration he croons; ‘the slow one now will later be fast, the first one now will later be last’)
Among all the recent obituaries for Steve Jobs we were reminded he said he was most proud of his family. Sad though that he said his motivation for having his biography written was so that his family understood why he wasn’t here for them as much as he wished. I choose a different path.
There is so much that seems like it matters. What do you look like? What stuff have you got? Who recognises you? How many twitter followers do you have? What’s your frequent flyer level?
Let’s change the world. Let’s advocate, serve, create, facilitate. Let’s be agents of change. Let’s lose sleep in creative worry about how to make society better. But let’s remember today, not on our death beds, that in the scheme of things, ironing that school uniform really matters.
I thank God every day for being reunited with my boys after 12 years apart and for surviving cancer so that I can be part of not only my children’s lives but also my grandchildren’s lives too. Simple pleasures are worth more thn status or wealth. I feel truly blessed!