Bittersweet Marinade

It’s funny how it’s the simple things that can be so profound.

Like the simple thought that you’re dying every second of your life.

Marinate on that for a second. You are dying. Right now.

Can you feel it? Roll your mortality around your mouth with your tongue; taste the bittersweet truth of it. If you let it, that mortality will hit you like a bag of bricks right in the gut.

But the truth, of course, is also that you’re alive this very second. At least physically… But are you really alive? Do you feel the intense energy of life pulsing through your veins? Fill your lungs with your vitality; taste the bittersweet, temporary truth of it. If you let it, that vitality will straighten out your back and fill your body with lightness and strength.

See? Simple, yet profound.

The simple facts that you’re living and dying right now make you a ridiculous walking oxymoron! You’re Shrodinger’s cat in the flesh; you’re the inseparable Chinese twins Yin and Yang. You’re alive!! Yet, you’re one breath closer to death.

I think that in order to truly live, you must embrace your death. Similarly, in order to truly die you must be able to embrace your life. Unhappy is he who dies without ever having lived. Weak and afraid is he who lives life without embracing his death.

Ice Cube once rapped “Don’t talk about death I got too much life to live!” I’ve always loved that line. Though in this context it might be somewhat limiting. We all have a limited amount of time on this crazy dust ball, some less than others, but how fully we live depends on how willing we are to embrace our death, however near or premature it might be. If you were to die tomorrow, will you go out knowing that you were living to the fullest?

I don’t mean just being happy, i mean feeling joy! I don’t mean just being sad, I mean loving and giving so deeply that loss makes you grieve.

Ok, I’m not saying that we need the amp pushed all the way up to an ear-piercing eleven.

I’m saying that for life to be full and vibrant we need to fill ourselves with a bit more color, more love, more passion. One way to light a fire under that complacent, colorless, little ass of ours is to remind ourselves religiously of our mortality.

Try it for a week. Stop and really smell the flowers, like you’ll never see them again. Breathe deep the air around you. Feel the electricity in your fingertips when you touch your lover. Focus on accomplishing the things you care about; do you even remember what those things are? Fill yourself up with love for something and feel your vitality start to stir. Let it come back! Keep stoking the fire when you can. You’ll feel it give shivers down your spine, tingling your thighs and toes. Let it fill you up! Smile, cry, and feel what it means to truly be alive.

Honestly, as romantic as this all is, it’s so much easier said than done. I don’t think I have been living any fuller, feeling more directed or alive, but lately I’m definitely more focused on trying to figure out what things in life I can do with passion. I’ve started writing again, playing music again. I’ve opened myself up to new people and new opportunities. I’ve been slowly stoking those passions, and the more I do it the more fulfilled and meaningful my life becomes. Slowly. One tingling breath closer to death at a time.

I’ve been marinating in this sauce for a while now. I’m still not sure what to do with it, but I like the taste of it. Bittersweet. Real.

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