FEEL GOOD FRIDAY: Unsentimental.


by Dave Markwell

Well, the kids are back at school. This event seems to be lacking some of the significance of years past. I’m not sure why. I don’t feel jaded or like I’m becoming unsentimental about these things. But, I just don’t really care that much that they’re in new classes with new teachers, learning new things. I kind-of care, but am not wrapped up in it. I am happy they’re out of the house. I’m happy they have some structure and get to see their friends each day. But, all-in-all, I’m pretty underwhelmed by all the to-do.

Historically, the first day of school provokes feelings of nostalgia and near-weepy sentiments about the passing of time and my kids growing up and my slow-crawl to the grave. This year I just don’t feel it. This is neither good nor bad. It just is.

I guess it feels like life. Time passes and we feel and don’t feel and care and don’t care and do and don’t do. Some days we drive the boat and some days we simply drift in the current and watch the water flow around the rocks and eddys. Some days we make the weather and some days we sit in our lounge chairs and observe it.

As the world spins madly through the hours and minutes and years of our lives, sometimes we must step off the ride. Occasionally, it is necessary to let it spin without us. Being a non-participant allows us to just check it out, without the urgency to contribute. In these moments, our paths become more clear and our purpose more inspiring.

While it seems a bit odd that I have chosen a relatively significant time to sit on the bench and catch my breath before getting back in the game, but maybe we don’t pick this time. Maybe this time picks us. Perhaps some cosmic clairvoyant sense measures these things and picks our time to ride the pine. I’m not sure what the metrics are which determine when we need to take a break, but when I get to sit for a few minutes, it sure feels right.

So, this morning I will sit and watch. I will do this after I wake my son, yell at him to get out of the shower, remind him to bring the stuff he is trying to forget. I will wake my daughter, make her breakfast, get yelled at by her for reasons I will likely never understand, then take her to school, wish her a wonderful day and tell her I love her.

I guess that as the world spins we must spin with it. Our little intermissions are allowed only in our minds. We are duty-bound to live our lives. Each day. And, all things considered, this is not such a bad thing. Life is a pretty fun game to play…

[EDITOR’S NOTE:”Feel Good Friday” is a regular column written by Des Moines resident Dave Markwell, who just published his first book called “A Feel Good Life” (buy it on Amazon here). Dave also extols to all neighbors: “Enjoy where we live. Put your feet on the pavement and truly feel how great it is to live here!” Also, you can “friend” Dave on Facebook here. Or work out with him at his exercise company Waterland CrossFit!]


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