Live Like You Were Dying–Tim McGraw
He said “I went skydiving
I went Rocky Mountain climbing
I went 2.7 seconds on a bull named Blue Manchu
And I loved deeper and I spoke sweeter
And I gave forgiveness I’d been denying”
And he said “Someday I hope you get the chance
To live like you were dying”
As I drove to a nearby city with my mom, my aunt and my uncle on Friday, I contemplated the fact that we were heading to yet another funeral for an older relative. Aunt Therese was 95, a tiny, beautiful lady that I will miss, even though I didn’t see her often. She was constantly tossing out self-deprecating jokes, making me laugh, but beneath that humour was a strong woman with a big heart. I thought about how many funerals we’ve been to in the last couple of years, and I remarked to my mom, “I’m not in wedding season anymore.” If you’ve been through wedding season, you know exactly what I mean. I don’t spend every day contemplating death, and what to do with the years I hope I have left, but funerals definitely bring the topic up, if only for as long as it takes to squash it back down again.
I was a bit hesitant about choosing this song, at first. It was overplayed on radio when it was a hit, and for a while, it almost felt like one long cliché from start to finish. I haven’t heard it so much lately, though, and I was able to listen to it with a different ear. The message still hits home. I remember when I used to spend too much energy worrying about things I couldn’t control, or what I wanted to be doing when the kids got bigger, or when I had some time off work, and so on. I’ve let go of this way of thinking (mostly). I am working at letting the journey be part of the adventure, instead of having a head so full of worries that I was practically missing my own life on the way through.
“I was finally the husband
That most of the time I wasn’t
And I became a friend a friend would like to have
And all of a sudden going fishin’
Wasn’t such an imposition
And I went three times that year I lost my dad
I finally read the Good Book, and I
Took a good, long, hard look
At what I’d do if I could do it all again
That being said, I do need to make one thing clear (since you all have the chorus stuck in your head now): I am NOT planning to go sky diving. Ever. My dad wants to go. So does one of my sisters. The two of them were discussing plans about it one day, not too long ago. My husband overhead and said, “I want to go, too!” I told all of them to go ahead and do it, if they really felt the need, but to call me AFTER it was all over, and they were safely back on the ground. I do not want to watch. I do not want to be there. I do not even want to know it’s happening.
So, sky diving is not on my list. I don’t like adventure that much. I will focus on being the best person (mom, wife, teacher, daughter, sister, friend…) I can be, and I am going to add this song to my set list with my new band. I had to think about it for a bit, because I certainly don’t sound like Tim McGraw. But maybe hearing it sung by a woman will make people hear it in a new way. I don’t take myself too seriously, but little things like this keep me alive inside, beyond work, laundry, dishes, housework and running kids around. My CD project keeps hitting technical challenges (gotta love computers). In the meantime, forming a new band, getting practiced up and working at lining up our first few gigs has been a great motivator to keep going with the music. My list of goals isn’t complicated, but without that list, I would feel like I’m missing the point somewhere. I don’t think God put us here just to wander our way through the time we get. It’s important to have a focus, find our purpose, and enrich the lives of others as we go through this life.
And now, I’m curious… what’s on your list?
Someday I hope you get the chance
To live like you were dying
Like tomorrow was a gift
And you’ve got eternity
To think about
What you’d do with it
What could you do with it?