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The Ultimate Gift: A Moment with Bill Reflection

Updated on December 18, 2014

From the Shell to the Great Unknown

There is safety inside. It is warm there, comfortable there, and yes, natural there. There is no awareness of life on the outside. There are no concepts to grasp, no dreams to embrace, and no fears to face. There is no earthly reason and no incentive to do what she is compelled to do, and yet she does it. Beak to shell, tap, tap, tap, testing for weaknesses, straining with rubbery muscles, seeking the unknown, she continues exploring for a way out.

For seventeen days she has grown inside her protective coating, but now she must leave, for a voice calls her, the same voice we have all heard, the siren’s song of life.

Can you hear it? Can you hear the sweet melody? Can you hear the sweet melody sung by billions of voices around the world?

The siren’s song of life.

Do you dance to it? Do you dance to this sweet melody? Do you dance with reckless abandon to this sweet melody?

Or do you remain in the corner, lip-syncing to the melody, hoping someone will choose you, the perennial wallflower, to be their dance partner?

Free at last!
Free at last! | Source

The Great Unknown

Now that we’ve broken free from that shell, the world awaits. We begin with a crawl, exploring our immediate surroundings, prodding here, testing our limits there, always reaching beyond, always curious, and certainly never bored. We giggle, we cry, we embrace the moment without concerns for the future or the guilt of the past.

The crawl becomes a walk, and then a run, leaping over obstacles, splashing through puddles, encircling life with arms outstretched, the wonder of it all filling our personal vessels with joy. Our bodies grow, our minds expand, and our future is limitless as long as we maintain the devil-may-care attitude and go with the flow.

And then life intervenes.

Exploring the Great Unknown
Exploring the Great Unknown | Source

The Older We Get

Off to school, and the learning continues, not only the book variety, but how to interact with others, and how to make our own personal mark on this world, and we are introduced to a new word, a cumbersome word, a word that shackles our freedom and leaves us, for the very first time, longing for the past.

That word is responsibility!

Grades must be maintained, and relationships must be planted, tended to, and harvested with loving care. Suddenly life is a bit more complicated, the giggles are fewer, and although the puddles have not diminished in number, our desire to splash through them has ebbed. There is too much that needs to be done, and the responsibilities grow. We get a job, we add to our possessions, and we fall in and out of love. Deadlines here, promises there, people are counting on us to perform, and societal pressure demands that we conform.

The once care-free spirit is now shackled, and the fire that once burned brightly is reduced to burning embers.

And Then It Happens

We wake up one day and, to our horror, we find ourselves thinking back to days gone by, and we realize just how long it has been since we howled at the moon or acted like a child.

And sadness envelopes us!

The bills weigh us down, our relationships are in shambles, our job, quite frankly, sucks, and there is no end in sight. Where once we saw brilliant hues, now we only see different shades of gray. Where once we saw opportunities, now we only see closed doors and missed chances.

The giggles rarely arrive, so we seek happiness in the transitory, a few extra drinks, a shot of speed, fancier clothes, a nip and tuck, and the false joy of a five-minute frolic with a stranger between the sheets. We race from one substitute to the next, a desperate sprint from one false god to another, frantically searching for the childhood we lost, the joy we lost, and the promises that no longer seem possible.

And then one day we look in a mirror and realize, to our horror, that we can’t outrun the inevitable truth: we did it to ourselves.

But It’s Not Too Late

We are never helpless!

The only constant in life is change, whether it is forced upon us or we seek it out. Change is inevitable. The only question, then, is this: are you going to be the punch line in your life’s joke?

What you once had, you can have again.

It is entirely up to you!

Today could be the day you change your life.

It is entirely up to you!

When was the last time you raised your arms and allowed the joy of life to flow through your body? When was the last time you acted like a child? When was the last time you laughed so hard your body ached, and you rejoiced in that ache? When was the last time you said “to hell with it” and acted spontaneously?

Do you even remember how to do it?

The journey ends
The journey ends | Source

Your Days Are Numbered

That is a truth you cannot deny. Perhaps you feel it as you read this message. Perhaps the body is slower, the responses more sluggish, and you find yourself moving with an old-man’s gate. No matter your age, your own personal final chapter awaits you, the tolling of the bell sounds in the distance, and when the final bell sounds, none of us knows for sure. Today? Tomorrow? Next year?

What are you waiting for?

Hurry, before…..

The shell, once again, envelopes her. The siren’s song of life can no longer be heard. A different kind of escape is now sought, the blessed final sleep, when tired body and mind nestle down and embrace an ending to this chapter of existence. Those final moments are spent reviewing a life well-lived, or they are spent regretting a life well-wasted.

And the brilliant hues fade to gray and then, finally, to black.

2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

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    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 2 years ago from New York, New York

      So true Bill and was just looking at Emma at her school holiday party and seeing how she looks at parties, such as this and life in general still. And realizing that sometimes I am so guilty of not seeing stuff like this from that vantage point anymore and truly need to slow down a bit and try my best to not always look at the overall big picture, but the smaller nuisances, too. Thanks for the reminder here today, too. Have a wonderful Thursday now, too!

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 2 years ago from Arizona

      We cannot change what is sometimes but often have to live with that. However, we can dream up new ideas and work on them..Fail or succeed we are doing something meaningful for ourselves. I always have a new project in my head--not always money making and this keeps me going. I like to think Bill, that I am still silly and can dance around the house in fun.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Hi Bill; well I have jumped in with both feet with a challenge for all to share some of these memories with us all this winter! Have three so far and more on the way. Whether you join us writing or not hope you will share the memories. What can be better? Who doesn't have memories, huh...or reflections? ^+

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      A powerful message to embrace life and live for the moment, Bill. To laugh like children and frolic as if it's our last dance.

      I remember several years back breaking into Monty Python's Silly Walk as I was walking down a main road. It was such fun to see people's reactions! I haven't done that in quite a while.

      Guess it's time to break out of the shell I've allowed age to build around me.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      For sure, Janine. If you want to know what you are missing in life, watch a little child. That's all the reminder you'll need.

      Thank you for that thought, and Happy Thursday to you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      For sure, Carol, there are things we cannot change....but we can always see life as a gift, as you do and as you live. Thank you for being you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jackie, I already signed up. Count me in and I'll have it posted next week in time for Christmas. :) Thanks for the challenge.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Too funny Sha. I remember that walk. I have the feeling Bev and I will be doing it tonight. LOL Thanks for the reminder and no, I will not film it. :)

    • ologsinquito profile image

      ologsinquito 2 years ago from USA

      That is true. The only constant in life is change, and the older I get the more things seem to change. From my perspective, life here on earth would be very difficult, with its series of losses, without God and the knowledge that there is life beyond this one. God Bless you.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 2 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Your hubs this week reflect introspection, Bill, as well as your life philosophy.

      As I read the last section of this essay, it reminded me of quotes by several famous writers reminding us (in varied wording), "When we are born, we begin to die." If we become obsessed with the final ending that grows nearer, especially as we age, it will ruin our ability to enjoy life in the present. How much better to wring every joyous moment from what we have! Even in the last chapter, we should embrace the moment.

      Voted Up+++

      Jaye

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      God bless you, ologsinquito, and thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Jaye! I'll leave this life kicking and screaming, because I completely love this gift I've been given. Every last second will be grabbed and enjoyed with all the strength that I have.

      bill

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Hmmm, around here they are all telling me not to be so young acting. I am just not willing to live the adult life yet. Maybe later.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good for you, Eric! Fight them on that one, and sooner or later they'll join you in the fun. :) Thanks my friend and Happy Thursday to you.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Great message, bill. I love to act like a kid and I get to do it quite often, usually with my grandchildren. They think I'm totally bonkers but they love it. One of the best things my older granddaughter said to me was when I'd been messing about and pretending I didn't want her to see me with cream on my face; she said to her mother, 'She's wicked isn't she, grandma?' I felt so young, so full of joy and I've never forgotten that moment. It was done to stop her bothering about having to have suncream put on her own face.

      I laugh a lot more these days because life is good, carefree and I don't have to work!

      Enjoy your Thursday, bill, and have a good splash in all those puddles!

      Ann

    • Availiasvision profile image

      Jennifer Arnett 2 years ago from California

      Beautiful thoughts on mortality. Did "Insterstellar" get you thinking about the topic? We often forget that time is passing us by. I don't want to get to the end and find that I had not truly lived. Thanks for reminding us that every second is a gift.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Brilliant from beginning to end! Thanks for this exceptional insight into the completion of the cycle. Your reflections are full of soul!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, this is the perfect day to splash in puddles. As soon as Bev gets home from work we'll go for a walk and splash in a couple...I'll even do one for you. :)

      Loved the story about the cream on your face. Wicked? How about wickedly fun?

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      No, Jen, not Interstellar. Just the advancement of age and a sincere love of life. :) Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Dora. This old soul is feeling younger every day, and it is all because of my outlook on life. I know you understand that.

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      lovedoctor926 2 years ago

      A very good hub Bill & thought-provoking. I like to watch & hear you on video. Thank you for sharing my friend. You are helping other writers make a difference in their lives. voted up useful.

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 2 years ago from Norfolk

      As I type this I see that I have two choices, actually no, three, there are two face lift ads starring at me and I'm thinking no, no, no, I much prefer the third choice, your attitude to life. Thanks for the kick up the jumper, it is time I remembered that there is a life outdoors and away from my computer.

      I am going to have a good day tomorrow, it will be my birthday:)

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 2 years ago from london

      Exceptionally beautiful and just brilliant,Bill.

      You know that I like the soul-searching ones more. Forces us to think, reflect, move forward as we drop the banana skins. (Just made that one up)

      Inspirational!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Doc. I greatly appreciate your kind words, and I hope what you say is true about making a difference.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sally, no face lift for you, my friend, and I think the outdoors is just what the doctor ordered. :) Enjoy your day and Happy Birthday to you. Do something special for yourself. You deserve it.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Manatita, thank you.....love the banana skin reference. Very appropriate analogy. You must be a writer. :)

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 2 years ago from london

      Funny. Laugh ... ha ha ha ...

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      I should've mentioned that 'wicked' was then the 'in' word for 'great'! Now, apparently, it's 'sick'. I prefer the old one! :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Indeed, manatita!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sheez, Ann, I didn't know that...wicked is sick? Sigh! :)

      bill

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Bill, my friend, your posts this week are so introspective, ultimately positive but tinged with a bit of melancholy. Perhaps the drear of winter cold and darkness makes us a bit more somber, or maybe the end of another year brings us to a time of reflection. I pray you are well. Please know that you are much loved and admired in this little community.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      What a wonderful way to say, " Time is running faster than the speed of lightening, get off your butt and do the things you long to do, go where you've yearned to go. " I am inspired! Your writing does that for me. Thank you...

    • RachaelOhalloran profile image

      Rachael O'Halloran 2 years ago from United States

      Well, this article sure is a kickstarter to prompt us to turn our thoughts inward, then outward. It is that time of year to reflect on what we have, what we do with what we have and how well we pay it forward to those who do not have. TY

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Linda. I am well. The past few essays have been my gift to someone asking for a bit more introspection from me, the way I used to write often here at HP. Really, I am not melancholy. In fact, I am hopeful and positive as 2015 approaches.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Ruby! I think sometimes I write these articles as a reminder to myself that there are still things to be accomplished, but it is gratifying to know that they inspire others.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rachael. it is that time of year for sure, but the older I get, the more introspective I become. I certainly couldn't have written this forty years ago. :)

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 2 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Whoa, Bill. Get out of my head (smile). I was just contemplating the same things. My recent birthday made me a sixty-year-old and I started looking back on all that I have and have not accomplished. I started thinking about who I was and whether or not I am living the life I want to live. I need to make some adjustments because I want to spend my final days reviewing a life well-lived.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Bill, as always you're right on the money. Time is much too precious to waste. We came into the world kicking and screaming, it would be so good to go out with the knowledge that we made a difference, that we truly lived. The over fifties certainly seem to have taken this to heart, apparently, older folks are really behaving badly, they are going out and grabbing life by the tail. :) I like to believe that when the end finally comes, this is when we break the shell to escape the wary prison, the time to embark on another incredible journey, but first, let's live to the last drop. I love this, maybe it's the aches and pain of winter reminding us that our time is limited but this really resonates with me right now.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for sharing the inspirational story and important reminder, Bill. We need to make the best use of time that we can.

    • Froggy213 profile image

      Greg Boudonck 2 years ago from On A Mountain In Puerto Rico

      This was a great piece of literature Bill. Thank you. I really enjoyed reading this.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. I love the fact that the only constant in life is change. Otherwise I'd be bored silly. I don't think I'll have any regrets. I plan on pushing myself to the limit right to the finish line.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Aw ... my comment went away! Well, here it goes again ...

      Bill, thank you so much for the inspiration to live each day with the wonder of a child in our hearts, for none are guaranteed a tomorrow. We should live this very day, right here, right now, and jump in headfirst with passion.

      I am reminded of all the greats who did their best work in their 80s, all of the artists, composers, writers and all else. If we are still breathing, then that means we are still living for a purpose. It ain't over 'til it's over, even if the fat lady has already sung Hahaha

      Peace and blessings always

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Marlene, why is it you look so young at sixty and I look so old at sixty-six? It's not fair, I say!!!!! :)

      I don't think you have to worry about that look back on your final days, my friend. You're on the right track from where I am viewing the action.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Jo! Knowing me the way I do, I suspect I'll still have a few regrets when the final days are upon me, but I'm going to whittle that list down as much as possible.

      The aches and pains of winter....indeed, my friend. Nicely stated.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Alicia. I see so many people just going through the motions. Seems like a terrible waste to me.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Greg! Calling this literature was a very kind thing for you to say.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I love it, Bill! Sprint to the finish, come hell or high water. A favorite saying of my dad's, although I admit I'm not quite certain what that means. LOL Have a great Friday, buddy.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, nice job of combining two cliches into one at the end. That is not as easy to do as it may seem. LOL

      Thank you as always, my friend.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 2 years ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very great and meaningful message to people. Our lives are so complicated that we never know where we are heading in pursuit of wealth and happiness. Your article is a great need of the hour to remind people to look back and reflect a moment and understand the real essence of life and happiness.

      Thanks for sharing this article. Voted up and beautiful.

    • travmaj profile image

      travmaj 2 years ago from australia

      Yikes, here I am, huge realisation. so much to do and so little time. Well, less time than there once was. Thank you for the kick start, we all need it now and again. Best wishes Bill.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 2 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      You are so right! Time is precious make the best of it.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 2 years ago

      I do believe in living every moment and making those moments the best they can be. I love to laugh and embrace the child in me. Your words are very inspiring, billy. Voted up, useful, interesting, awesome and beautiful!

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      You're certainly in a pensive mood. Is everything OK?

      I appreciate your words more than you know. They are the kick start I needs when I start to become complacent. Never stop reminding us that life is for living not existing.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Venkatachari M, you said it perfectly...understand the real essence of life and happiness. Thank you for sharing that.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      travmaj, I know I need a kick start from time to time, so I just assume others do as well. Thank you for being here and have a superb weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Indeed it is, DDE! Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pop, if we ever meet, we'll just sit around and laugh all day. :) I can think of worse ways to spend a day.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, I'm fine, really. These types of articles are what I wrote a lot of when I first came to HP. I just felt like returning to them for awhile. Thanks for your concern.

    • m abdullah javed profile image

      muhammad abdullah javed 2 years ago

      From a smaller shell to a bigger one, you have nicely carried us on a meaningful journey of life and a blessed sleep. In between the two lies a treasure of secrets of life. Your words of inspiration will surely help us feel during the final days of our life that we have lived well, by all means. Thanks Bill Sir. Inspirational as always.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you m abdullar javed. Yes, it is what lives between those two shells that defines our lifetime. Live fully and live with love, my friend, and thank you.

    • m abdullah javed profile image

      muhammad abdullah javed 2 years ago

      Yeah ofcourse Bill Sir. Thank you.

    • m abdullah javed profile image

      muhammad abdullah javed 2 years ago

      Yeah ofcourse Bill Sir. Thank you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      My pleasure, M abdullah javed. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And again, my pleasure. :)

    • Iris Draak profile image

      Cristen Iris 2 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      Bill, you say things in the best way! The little quail are perfect for this piece. And I'm with you, I am loving life after forty and wouldn't go back to 20, 30, 35 or even 40 for any amount of money. The unknown isn't scary anymore. It's exciting. And you are right. It's never too late.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Iris, living life in the fast lane and loving every minute of it. Thank you my friend, and have an outstanding weekend.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 2 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      "Regrets, I've had a few..."

      Coulda, shoulda, woulda, my three best friends. Even after making amends and letting it go, this one still haunts me, not because of what I might have lost, but what others may have lost due to me.

      But I make gains on this every day, and someday, I will put it all behind me, because I know everyone else already has.

      Very good Hub, Bill.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You and me both, Will. You and me both. I was, at one time, a human Katrina....today, I slowly repair the damage done, one day, one act, at a time. Hopefully I'll have the scales balanced by the time I check out.

      Thank you as always, Will, and Merry Christmas.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 2 years ago from New York

      Certainly guilt and regret are a waste of time. We have regrets and guilt but dwelling on them only makes more regret! Dr. Seuss said, “Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.” I think that quote fits in well with all you've said here my friend.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, I love that Seuss quote and yes, it fits perfectly.

      Have a great weekend and Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I agree with Ruby, and could not have stated it better. “Time is running faster than the speed of lightening, get off your butt and do the things you long to do, go where you've yearned to go. " I am inspired! Your writing does that for me.” What are we waiting for?? “Life…doesn’t it go by in a blink.” Wonderful retrospective, Bill.

    • profile image

      Ruth Cox 2 years ago

      You have worded life moments beautifully. Having turned sixty this year and losing my best friend of a lifetime, I too have been in a reflective mood. I figure life ain't over 'til it's done and I am not done yet!

    • Tashaonthetown profile image

      Natasha Pelati 2 years ago from South Africa

      I thoroughly enjoy reading your articles and it is a fabulous reflection that is inspiring to us all!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Genna! I think the older I get the more I appreciate this gift I've been given.

      Happy Holidays to you and yours, my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruth, I'm very sorry to hear of your loss. Thank you for stopping by, and blessings to you always.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you very much, Tasha! It's nice having you stop by.

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      Jo Alexis-Hagues 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Bill, I've just written a long and very deep comment, pressed enter and the whole darn thing disappeared. So I will just say, great hub. I'm proud of the life I've lived and will hopefully put it all in a book one day. Have a wonderful weekend my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, thank you for the long comment, wherever it is, and for trying again. I love hearing someone say they are proud of their life...good for you.

      Wishing you a wonderful weekend and a superb holiday season.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Yes they are...numbered..and the older we get the more keenly aware of it we are at least on a subconscious level.

      And dance, o Hell Yeah....we dance and sing...yes indeed.

      As always I find thoughts that reach my soul, bill.

      Love and hugs and rich blessings to you and all of your precious loved ones. Many Angels are on the way to you once again ps

    • cat on a soapbox profile image

      Catherine Tally 2 years ago from Los Angeles

      Hi Bill, Much appreciated words of wisdom! A daughter came late in life for us, and we found ourselves reliving our own childhoods through her with no fear of being silly. What a blessing! Although I still tend to be too serious at times, I do know that feeling of laughing and cackling until I ache, and do it often. Merry Christmas to you,

      Cat:)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      PS, you said it all....Hell Yeah we dance and sing. I love it, and I love your friendship.

      Happy Holidays to you and that marvelous family of fighters. Blessings always.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Cat, thank you for sharing that with us all. A great example of what this article is about.

      Blessings to you, and Merry Christmas to you and that family of yours.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 2 years ago from Dubai

      The ultimate gift is the gift of life and yes our days are numbered so let us make haste and live life to the fullest. Beautifully expressed, great write. Voted up,

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 2 years ago from South Africa

      "When was the last time you raised your arms and allowed the joy of life to flow through your body? When was the last time you acted like a child? When was the last time you laughed so hard your body ached, and you rejoiced in that ache? When was the last time you said “to hell with it” and acted spontaneously?"

      I nodded all the way, and when I reached above paragraph of yours, I thought, "Here am I now." But as in every stage of our life there is always a damn fly in the soup. Constant pain is now the fly in my soup, and I am so whole-heartedly fed-up with it and everything that goes with it, including meds, that I actually look forward to the next stage.

      Billy, this is a profound hub! Take one day at a time and make the best of it. Nothing will ever be perfect!

      Merry Christmas to you and yours :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Vellur, and Happy Holidays to you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martie, thank you for sharing your thoughts, and I so wish the pain would leave you. Still, I love your attitude. Thank you and Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 2 years ago from Hawaii

      The past can't change, but the future has yet to be written.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, vkwok. The future is my oyster and I'm ready to shuck it. :) Thanks my friend.

    • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

      Dim Flaxenwick 2 years ago from Great Britain

      You always make me think that bit deeper.wonderful work.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Dim. i appreciate you stopping by. Merry Christmas to you.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 2 years ago

      As the New Year approaches, this article is sure to spark many to reflect upon what purpose they have in life. Your words remind me that we have just this moment to live and we should make the best impression upon others for the good.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Dianna. That's what I hoped people would get out of this. Have a wonderful weekend, my friend.

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      Chantele Cross-Jones 2 years ago from Cardiff

      Hey Bill, great to see your still here and writing strong. I've been away from HP for almost the entire year :-( Been silly busy launching the photography business, working 2 PT jobs and...we finally bought our own house and moved in in September! So it's just been so so busy that sadly HP writing has taken a back seat, but I thought I would swing round today and take a nose at what's been going on. Hoping that once things settle down again in 2015 I will be back. I do love the community here and miss it dearly! Anyway. Merry Christmas and hope you have a Happy New Year too!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Daisy, yes, I would say you've been busy. I hope the photography business is purring along. Thanks for thinking of me. You are missed, and I hope you find the time to rejoin us. Happy Holidays to you.

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