Sunday, August 21, 2011

Rant # 14: moving on

Many of my favorite lyrics from Broadway shows were written by the great Stephen Sondheim. His lyrics are so insightful and they often mirror my general outlook on life. One of my favorites is called "Move On" from "Sunday In The Park With George". It says, "Stop worrying where you're going. Move on. If you can know where you're going, you've already gone. Just keep moving on."
I have found this philosophy very helpful throughout my life. When my mother passed on when I was a senior in High School, I was devastated. The easy thing to do would have been to wallow in my grief. Just check out for awhile. Instead I was back on stage 2 weeks later reprising the role of El Gallo in "The Fantasticks". I think that I just instinctively knew that I had to keep moving forward. That instinct was a survival mechanism that has seen me through a lot of the rough times in my life. The show biz aspects may sound glamorous to some but, believe me, it isn't the easiest lifestyle one could choose. There are many sacrifices involved in having a life in the theatre.

My instinct to keep putting one foot in front of the other no matter what I was going through led me to my general philosophy. Learning from the past is one thing, dwelling on it, or attempting to recreate it, is futile. That is why I speak about the past with a certain amount of reticence. The memories are still there but they have become more like a movie in my mind. It was a very good movie but there are too many movies I haven't seen yet to keep replaying the same one over and over.

It takes definite intention on your part to live in the now. There is work involved in letting go of the past. After all, we see the past as what made us who we are. That's right in a way but the past cannot be changed. Dragging it along behind us like the chains of Marley's ghost is going to significantly impede our progress. We have to work at forgiving ourselves first. Then we can forgive the people who may have wronged us. And finally we have the freedom, and our own permission, to live in the now with a sense of peace and love. Those chains that have bound us for so long can finally melt away, one link at a time.

Every morning I watch the sunrise and use it as a focus for my morning meditation. As the sun fills me with energy, I also allow it to remove all negativity that may come my way. I make a spiritual decision to banish any negative person or situation from affecting my sense of peace and love. Then I move on.

                                     Peace and Love,



  1. By the way. Any new members to my blog are greatly appreciated. Comments too!

  2. I completely agree, Bill! Although my pups are better at leaving the past behind than I am --- a work in progress :) I'm certainly getting better but sometimes default to fretting over the past, which is not constructive.

    I love your analogy of movies --- you've seen those old ones and there many other new ones to see. although, I'm one of those people who love to rewatch my favorites! lol

    Heidi & Atticus
    "commentary to give you paws..."

  3. Bill, Great analogy with the movies. I'm finding your posts so inspirational (I'm reading several in a row). I'm definitely joining your site and am so grateful to have been introduced to you through the circulation desk. You've been so kind to read my blog and I am thrilled to be catching up and reading yours. You are really an amazing person and am enjoying getting to know you.

    caregiving. family. advocacy.

  4. Thank you so much Trish, your comments mean a lot to me. Writing a blog lke this was a little scary because I worried that people might not "get" me. I am so happy to know that there are people like you who "get" me just fine. You inspire ME!