Sitting on a plane some 35,000 feet above the air, I have just finished watching the movie ‘Me before you’ – and have been emotionally moved like I can’t explain.
First of all, let it be said, that it is by far, the saddest movie I have ever watched of all time, full stop, no returns.
Sobbing madly on the plane (I’m talking uncontrollable tears) with poor Morgan (read; lucky Morgan!) sitting next to me unsure how to console me, one of the beautiful flight attendants spotted me, put his hand on his chest nodded at me like “I know what’s going on here, I know what you’re watching” disappeared, and re appeared with about 10 serviettes and a bottle of champagne for me and came back to my seat saying “You before me?” to which I tearfully just looked at him and started crying harder as he handed me the bottle.
You see, I love love so fucking much. I love love more than I will EVER be able to articulate. Ever.
Sometimes, and it’s hard to explain it but my heart will actually ache from loving so hard. The beautiful thing is, I know everybody has this capacity to love this hard, I just think I am just tuned in to it.
Seeing grandparents holding hands or calling each other sweetheart or darling literally riddles me with emotion, hearing of other peoples love stories makes my heart explode – and don’t even get me started on weddings.
But I love ALL love.
Love for one another; aka relationship love – sure I love that.
But love for humanity and kindness for all others – that is unconditional love to me which is even better than love and THAT is what makes my heart ache in the best way possible.
So to watch a movie where two people fall in love – despite Will’s differences already had me crying throughout the movie. Lou’s character was just the most beautiful, kind, sincere, genuine, positive woman who truly had a love for life and others. A sincerely beautiful and endearing quality to have. And yet, the inevitable still happened, that inevitable of which I can’t even get in to still because it’s far too traumatic and devastating at this raw moment to discuss.
What I DO want to talk about however were two resounding messages that so potently hit me right in this moment and brought me to pouring this blog post out still sitting on the plane, trying to stop these tears from falling and I sit here and write this.
P.s I interrupt this short post to update you on the amazing flight attendant Travis who just came back to check on me to see if I was ok – and I said I was writing about it and he said “oh darling” and I started crying again!! Haha Qantas you need to give Travis a payrise and a promotion he is all that is good and just in this world. Let’s continue on however….
What I DO want to talk about however were two resounding messages that so potently hit me right in the heart, like, took my heart, flipped it around and around and then burst it open filling the whole damn plane with glitter and unicorns and love hearts (think cartoon style).
And it was these two things….
You’ve only got one life and it’s your duty to live it as powerfully and beautifully as you can.
You can’t change who people are – you can only love them.
I want to speak to the first point first – and I get so perplexed with that statement because I think people have become so numb to that point having heard it in instagram inspiration posts and in books FAR too often.
So forget what you read – focus on how you FEEL when you read it.
People can think “you’ve only got one life” as SO cliché but I just want to shake those people and be like WAKE THE FUCK UP because you DO only have one life. And with that life do you want to be living even one DAY not as you pleased? I hope the answer is no.
I believe, trulyyyyyyy believe, I live a beautiful life – but do you want to know the secret as to why? It’s not the ‘stuff’ that is filled in it it’s the MOMENTS that I create.
I fundamentally live as though each and every single day is my last.
Even boarding this plane, I have to say I always do get a little twinge of ‘I trust that we will make it safe and sound’ but smile knowing that if we don’t every single person in my life deeply knows how loved they were by me.
Because there are so many of these things that occur in my daily life ….
I love publicly pouring love.
I love privately pouring love.
I love writing love letters in peoples birthday cards.
I love telling strangers how beautiful they look.
I love complimenting mums I don’t know on how phenomenally they are doing raising their babies.
I love asking the check out chicks “tell me something exciting you love to do”.
I love saying “I love you” at the end of EVERY SINGLE ONE of my calls or catch ups with family or friends (and I love they say it back).
I love sending long text messages detailing just how proud of people I am or how much I love them and WHY.
I love that every day no matter how productive or mayhem’ish my day may look there is something in there that I LOVE to do (be it a yoga class, journaling, a beach walk, a dance to loud music – whatever!).
I love not having any control over being able to hide my emotion at any given moment. Loving too wildly (there is no such thing). Laughing VERY loudly no matter who’s around me and crying with complete strangers at the absolute drop of a hat.
I love making out with Morgan daily and telling him how much I love him (several times a day).
I love sharing so vulnerably in every given moment – and I love that I love doing that.
I love that I can look every person I come in to contact with in the eye and tell them that I hope they have a “wild, magnificent, wonderful, extraordinary, wonderful” day as I leave them (and then I love seeing their face as no one says that stuff anymore).
You see, sure my life has some pretty fun stuff in it but it’s never the stuff that makes it so wild and wonderful – it’s the moments and memories and people that I collect that make it so.
I believe it’s about filling my life with adventure, not material ‘things’ and having wild and funny stories to tell, not stuff to show.
I don’t really care what car you drive– I care if you took 5 minutes out of your day today to tell all the people in your life if you loved them.
I don’t care what handbag you have – I care if you snort laugh when sharing that story of that ‘one time when you skinny dipped in the Mediterranean” (if that is your travel style, aka that is one of my own fav stories to tell!)
Point is – our lives are absolutely and fundamentally NOT about what we HAVE, it’s about what we DO, and how much we have LOVED.
I cannot tell you the synchronicity of this post either, as I recently got to find and follow a beautiful fellow blogger –Lisa, the extraordinary woman behind “Terminally Fabulous” and tragically, She is dying of terminal cancer.
She doesn’t have long left either – and she’s not ready to die (writing that just brings on more tears).
So when I say, ‘you’ve only got one life, and it’s your duty to live it as powerfully and beautifully as you can’ – I mean that with my whole being.
I OFTEN say, just IMAGINE if today was your last day – in fact I wrote a pretty long and heart felt blog post about It here, that if this morning, when your alarm went off, you didn’t wake up. Or you’re on your way to work and there is a freak accident. You can’t say it’s impossible because these sorts of things happen every single day.
I just want you to wake up and see that your life is not a dress rehearsal – there is no moment where everything is just going to click in to place and it’s exactly as it’s meant to be for you. You just have to show up every single day understanding that every moment is a choice.
You choose to understand that life is a gift.
You choose to say I love you more.
You choose to see the good over the bad more often than not.
You choose to just brush things off that aren’t worth holding on to.
You choose to forgive quickly.
You choose to love so wildly your heart hurts.
You choose you choose you CHOOSE.
So you guys, what if you could just choose better? A pretty wild statement right? Of course not, making a choice can be done from one second to the next with no real effort or thought – just choose better. We don’t need to get deep and woo woo about it, as one successful brand that you might know of says…
Just do it.
With that sentiment in mind, I also wanted to explore the second theme of the movie that hit my heart harder than I can truly articulate, which was;
You can’t change who people are – you can only love them.
Something pretty heartbreaking happens in the film – because of a decision one character makes (I don’t want to give away the whole movie in case you DO feel emotionally stable enough to see it). And Lou couldn’t change his mind, she couldn’t change what he wanted, she couldn’t change what he believed – and ultimately, she couldn’t change him.
She could only Love him.
And I just think that is the most beautiful lesson to bring in to our daily lives.
You might not be able to change the people in your life who challenge you the most.
You might not be able to change the fact that people in your life have wildly varying political or religious beliefs than you.
You might not be able to change the fact that you have a family member or friend that makes bad decisions.
But you can love them.
Don’t ever confuse unhealthily loving someone (aka domestic violence relationships – RUN far FAR far away in those cases – but that’s a post for another day) for unconditionally loving someone either.
I am talking about that work colleague who really grinds your gears because you have differing opinions.
Love them anyway.
I am talking about that parent who you don’t think gave YOU enough love as a child so you still have stuff around it.
Love them anyway.
I am talking about that friend who has decided to have wildly different religious or political views to you (set some boundaries of course, but)….
Love them anyway.
Morgan and I for the last year have spent half a day Thursday volunteering with the homeless. It’s not something that we ever or very very rarely post about or share, as we don’t do it TO share, we do it to serve. But every week, come rain, hot hot sun, or crazy hail storm (we have had it all), we go and pick up a bright Orange Sky Laundry van and go and wash our homeless friends clothes.
And every week, we hear their stories of alcoholism, or drug abuse, or how they escaped violent relationships, or how they’re just choosing homelessness as its easier and less stressful than living in homes west.
And you know what the greatest gift of all we give them?
A non judgemental space where they can just talk, and we aren’t there to try to change them, we are just there to LISTEN and LOVE on them. To ultimately; love them.
You truly can’t change who people are – and with all due respect, it’s not your RIGHT to, but you CAN love them.
And you want to know something?
If you focused on just these 2 things alone for the next month, living your life as powerfully and beautifully as you could – and hand in hand, not wasting energy on trying to change people, just loving them, I PROMISE and guarantee you that your life will radically change.
You really only do have one life – and no fuck’s are given as to how cliché that sounds. Because we do. And the faster that you realise that, and focus on doing the things and hanging with the people that you LOVE (vs the opposite) and LOVING people instead of trying to CHANGE people, the richer and more beautiful and more extraordinary your life becomes.
Look, I know I’m just a kid in the scheme of things, in this beautiful vortex of wild adventure that we call life, but what I do know is your life can only go in one direction (up) if you choose to focus on two principles that I think really are fundamental to beautiful living.
So from me to you today, and everyday, I just want to lovingly remind you, you really do only have one life, and it truly is your duty to live it as powerfully and beautifully as you can.
And above all else – please remember we sincerely can’t change who people are – but we can LOVE them.
So do that.
Love and live with reckless abandon.
Love and live like today was your lsat day on earth.
Love and live like you mean it and you WANT to.
And watch your life unfold as the true gift that it is right before your eyes.
Oh, and p.s … I love you.