Why not?


Why not? It’s a question, or is it? During the past five or six months, I have adopted “why not?” as somewhat of a new personal motto. “Why not” has become a way of life, an attitude to try new things, to take some risks. It has become my way of life, to be vulnerable, to chase dreams, to live.

Adapting this new “why not” lifestyle isn’t completely new to me, though. I’ve always had a natural desire to try new things, to give it a shot, take on a little risk and to have experiences. Before now, I seemed to come up with more excuses, was too lazy, too tired, or just too cheap to do things that I should have done, or at least tried.

I believe reflecting on my life experiences, life lessons, stumbles and successes, along with getting older every day, has made me realize that I must embrace this why not attitude more fully now.

Now, please don’t think my life has been void of great experiences. I’ve lived an amazing life, with awesome experiences, and tremendous blessings. It’s just at this point in my life, I don’t want to look back in 20 years and wish I would have tried something or given my kids new experiences that I could have with a little more of a “free-bird” attitude.

So, when did this revelation hit me, you may be asking?

There are a few, but one of the first things that comes to mind was on July 18th. I remember sitting on my couch and picked up a recently purchased Triathlon magazine to read. The first page I saw when I opened the magazine was a full-page ad for The Nation’s Triathlon, held in Washington DC in September. Having previously lived in the DC area, I knew about the event, but had never thought of competing in it until I saw that ad. At that moment, it hit me, “why not?” Two days later I had signed up and had everything booked to go to DC to race in The Nation’s Triathlon. Talk about spontaneity.

The race atmosphere in our nation’s capital and the entire experience in Washington DC that weekend was one I will never forget and one that I would not have had if I had not said, “why not.”

As most of you know, I have been committed to my training and exercise regimen over the past year. I have set goals of completing triathlons that seem so difficult and extreme. The decision to set these goals and commitments were made because I asked myself, why not?

I have enjoyed training and pushing myself to be healthier, not just for my own mental and emotional state, but also so I can enjoy being active and doing things with my children and loved ones, long into the future.

Yesterday, I woke up thinking it would be a normal Sunday for the kids and me. We would go to church, come back to my apartment, eat lunch, wrap Christmas presents and just hang out until it was time for the kiddos to pack up and go back to their mom’s house. There would have been absolutely nothing wrong with that being our Sunday together, but I had another thought! Why not?

“Hey kids, get dressed, I’ve got a surprise for you!” We loaded up and headed off to a new “Multi-tainment Center” that just opened with a fun “family-friendly” bowling experience and arcade at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort. The littles, as I call my two youngest, and I had a blast! My oldest chose not to go because she was stressed about getting her math homework completed and finishing To Kill a Mockingbird for English. We missed her being there, but had so much fun doing something spontaneous and different.

Why not? Why not live in the moment and live like there will be no tomorrow?

As Tim Robbins spoke, in my favorite movie, Shawshank Redemption, “I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really. Get busy living or get busy dying.”

I choose to get busy living. Why not, right?