So there's this thing I've been doing since I was 13 years old. One morning, in the middle of the summer, when I woke up I felt the sunlight on my face, and the very first thing I thought to myself was this:
"Oh good, another one."
That is, another day to be alive. Another day that I don't know how things are going to work out. Maybe it'll be an amazing day, filled with joy and passion. Maybe it will be a terrible day, that I'll be glad to see behind me when it's done.
I didn't have any remote idea just what sort of day it was going to be. But I was sure ready to find out.
The next day, I woke up. Same deal. And literally every single one after that.
I'm really not even sure why it started. I can't even tell you the exact date. For my own convenience, and because I love my sister, I have set the date at her birthday, July 9th.
Going by that...
From and including: Monday, July 9, 1984
To and including: Sunday, October 23, 2016
Result: 11,795 days
It is 11,795 days from the start date to the end date, end date included
Or 32 years, 3 months, 15 days including the end date
It is, without exception the single longest enduring intentional practice of my life.
Of those 11,795 days some have been truly awful. There were days I was convinced that I wasn't going to be seeing the next day. There were days I didn't WANT to see it.
But each morning even after those sorts of days, I woke up feeling differently, feeling glad for the gift that is being alive.
Recently, my friend Matti has adopted the same practice. It's got me paying attention again to the value and power of this simple little thing I do. We've been discussing it a lot, he and I, and I told him that maybe I'd make a hashtag out of it, start intentionally spreading it to others, encouraging folks to adopt the practice.
I can't decide between #ohgoodanotherone or maybe the more pithy and mysterious #OGAO.
(That last one reminds me of Oni Hartstein's #FDAU. Go on, you ask her about it.)
What I do know is that I'm grateful for today. I'm grateful to be here. I'm grateful you read this, and that you're around too.
Time to go see exactly what this day has for me.