Going home at 40 years old is never easy. Walking back into childhood memories, sights, smells and sounds that are now filled with age and hallways of fleeting moments. There are plenty of things that are missed, and just as many things that you can never get back, or even make up for. Growing older is a lot more difficult than I imagined. It feels lonelier, more segregated and isolating.
I had a number of absolutely insane goals as a kid, really far out ideas and dreams. The crazy thing is that I have literally achieved them all! Some of them are goals that people laughed at and said, “that would be great kid, but don’t get your hopes up” type of dreams. I feel like I still have something major to do. Some great and massive adventure to go on. I can’t put my finger on it. Maybe I am in it right now. Who knows? Maybe this is just how it works as you get older.
My childhood was incredible. It really was amazing. My parents loved, cherished and supported my every move. Even when I was a complete asshole and spent more time away from them and the family than probably 90% of kids in the world. I have two amazing brothers that looked up to me and loved spending time around me. Friends that you could only dream about, who I still keep up with to this day. (and miss on a regular basis- you know who you are) I had teachers, coaches and mentors that believed in me, pushed me, encouraged me, and I worked hard for them in just about everything but math!
I think ever since my wife and I returned from the mission field in China I have changed, drastically. I lost something, left something, some part of me over there. I have really tried hard to be me since 2008, but there are broken pieces scattered across the globe that I can’t seem to recover. I have become more introverted (ask my closest friends, the old me is anything but), quiet, constantly disappearing in thought. I used to be loud, full of energy, even a little crazy at times (in a good way). Of course certain friends bring it out in me instantly, but life, it has not. These emotions, these thoughts I try hard to capture on canvas. These lost pieces, this tension that exists in aging memories, it separates the whole of me breaking off pieces that leave wounds to heal over time.
I have seen a lot in 40 years. I have been around the world, laughed and cried a lot, and never stopped dreaming crazy dreams. As Appleseed Cast “Hanging Marionette” plays in my headphones…
“And the stars are burning bright,
The smoke is rising high,
The stripes are on the street,
From the mountain to the sea.”
...I am beginning to share these stories on canvas with color and word, my adventure on this second half of life.