Letter to Elliott and Shelby #4 – It’s a dream

Dear Elliott and Shelby,

Life is but a dream. That’s true. You are going to experience a great many things in this life, many good and I hope your bad experiences are few. In any case, everything in this life is a dream, it is passing memory, it is a phantom.

Let me quickly recount a few things in my life that have happened….

I grew up very poor and all of my clothes came from wherever my mother could find them.

When I was about 12, I was reduced to wearing orange corduroy pants to school. As you may have guessed your Dad wasn’t known among his classmates for his fashion sense. These moments were humiliating to me.

I remember the first time I ever experienced a roller coaster. I was around 18 and it was the extreme kind where you stand up and it even had a loop. These moments were exhilarating.

I traveled to Mauritania and stopped in the city of Nouadhibou right before traveling into the deep Sahara. I had the best grilled fish you could imagine and managed to swallow a bone that got stuck in my throat. I slept under the stars that night
watching the clouds slide across the full moon. Those moments were scary because of the bone, but mostly I remember the moments as being filled with amazement and wonder. I felt alive.

This morning I had a black bean omelet. Nothing to report on there I’m afraid. Moments of indifference.

As you go through life, occasionally pick out 10 random events ranging from as far back as you can remember to as late as today. Not a single one of those moments is now any more real than the other. When you’re having a bad time remember that it shall be passing memory and it will help you through. When you’re having a great time remember that too. It will help you enjoy it more.  It’s all impermanent and temporary, right down to your very life. Know that about your life and know to enjoy it.

Love,
Dad

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