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Lifelong Learning - Electric Fences (April 2014)
By: Dr. Lu Sweet
I'm 47 and I'm proud to say that I'm not at all grown up yet. Additionally, I have no plans to do so in the near future. At times, like when I'm at work, I must act a certain way, of course. All other times…I can be myself. Not too long ago, I was helping at my daughter's soccer practice when I got a GREAT idea. It was the end of practice and time for everyone to "shag" the balls-to get them all rounded up and put away.
I noticed one stray ball 20-30 yards away from the others. It was lying up next to the fence. In order to gain attention to myself, I called out loudly to the girls, "you all get those balls while I get this one over here by this fence." As they watched me (which was the intended plan), I reached down for the ball with one hand and put my hand on the fence with my other. Understand this fence was nothing more than a regular chain-link fence. However, as I touched it, I pretended it was electric. I acted as though I were being shocked, for about three seconds, then I hit the ground and didn't move.
The majority of the girls yelled things like "Oh my gosh!" and "Is she hurt?" My two daughters however, started laughing hysterically and the older one said, "You are so dumb-get up!" I got up and we continued to laugh. The other girls replayed the situation to each other, to my daughters and to me with statements like, "That was scary.", "That looked so real.", "Your kids didn't even believe you.", and "You're hysterical."
It's just what I do sometimes. I don't believe in the phrase "act your age" all of the time. Life is for living. It's for fun and spontaneity. It's for enjoying those that you care to be around. It's for experiencing.
If you watched the movie, "Forrest Gump", you will recall Forrest quoting his mother as saying, "Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get." Sometimes you just have to go with what life "gives" you and make the most of it.
My life is my family. I live for them. In doing so, I quote Angelina Jolie who said, "The only way to have a life is to commit to it like crazy." There's a song out there that says, "…if today was your last day…" I try to keep that in mind. I don't dwell on it by any means. Instead, I try to use it to inspire me to be my best for myself, my family and those I come in contact with each and every day.
I'm 47 and I plan to keep on acting like myself. I hope you do the same, because as Charlie Brown reminds us, "In the book of life, the answers aren't in the back." I challenge you to make the most of it every day, all the time. I challenge you to be electric!
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