What is a Life Well Lived?

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Dec 15, 2016, NBA broadcaster Craig Sager dies at 65. Sager, known for his colorful outfits and personality, died after a long battle with cancer. Craig had received his start in K.C. and never lost his love for baseball or life; at least that is the consensus of everyone who talked about him.What I want to discuss this morning is a comment made by Steve Kerr before the Golden State game, Instead of asking for a moment of silence he ask asked everyone at the auditorium for a moment of joy. He said he was making this request  because what was remarkable about Craig was he had a life well lived. What I have been asking myself and I think you should ask yourself is ,”has my life been well lived or even more importantly is it being well lived.” I find it a lot easier to ask the question than answer.

I would like to take a little time to differentiate myself from Craig. You always hear about what a heroic fight  he fought against cancer and how he never lost his lust for life. What I can say with a clear conscious is that I have continue to want to live. There are no signs of bravery in these actions; in fact, I have on more than one occasion asked not to be left alone. This experience has taught me that we are all going to die and sometimes it won’t be pretty. This is what awaits us all, but it doesn’t answer the question what it means to have lived a life well. I am a Christian so many of many my answers come from it’s traditions and sacred texts. I also believe what family and close friends think of you is not only very important but can help gain great insight into us has a person, a friend, a spouse, and a parent. The answers may vary, few of us can be all things to all people. In addition, we must realize that relationships requires the interactions of at least two people. It’s not all about you. Can the other person receive and appreciate what you have to offer.

In my case, let’s start with my wife. In a relationship that has endured more than four decades there has been many ups and downs. I can honestly say I have been more than surprised, by the way she has stuck by side. There are no words of appreciation adequate to express my gratitude. Still yet, I am not sure what she thinks of me as a person and what she thinks she owes her husband. These are questions for the warmth of the sunlight because on a cold, dark winter night a memory gives off little heat. Being there  to fill the loneliness is most important. What about my Kids? My first-born, Stephanie, the one I didn’t teach as much, mostly I just expected. Stephanie has made sure I felt needed and loved, without ever speaking the words. She made the 1200 + round trip to Mayo like it was a jaunt to the grocery store. She makes me feel I did something right. William, my 18 yr. Old son has been great, he has CP and it affects every area of his life. I am proud of the progress he has made since my cancer has changed his world, but I also know in the long run he would be better off with me around. So Will makes me feel needed. My third child is 16, I have spent more time with this child because I home schooled. This is the one child who I wonder if they even realize I have cancer. I thought that we shared the most in common, when he was really young, one neighbor used to call him mini me; but in truth I seldom know where his head is anymore or even less about what he thinks is important. I have no idea what he thinks of me, there is no sense of animosity, no real sense of anything. I hope he knows I love him and I will reach out my hand has far as I can. At some point, however he has to grab it  and accept me and my values. Maybe I wouldn’t, but I think I would like to know what he thinks. I put forth the effort because I thought I could make a difference, I planned on looking back on this experience with a sense of pride, something I did right. So in the end I did what I did; some good, some not so much and some I just really don’t know. I know this, I am not going to spend time on regrets or worrying needlessly on things that haven’t happened yet. I am not trying to be a hero, just a man who understands his wife, kids, and his friends have all been much better than he could have expected.

wade

4 thoughts on “What is a Life Well Lived?

  1. Wade, you continue to be as transparent as anyone I know. This journey has allowed you to share parts of yourself that you have kept hidden from people who care about you. John and I continue to pray for your health and the family. We love all of you. We’re going to be in Kansas City around the middle of May. We expect to see you then!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wade, your articles are always thought provoking and stirs the murky waters however deep. I heard the song “I need a hero” just yesterday and my first thoughts were of you. I really paid attention to the words this time and phrases like “gotta be strong”, “gotta be brave”, and”fresh from the fight” stayed with me a long time. If you ever read stories about much acclaimed heroes, it occurs to me that there are many common similarities. Reluctance, humility, and a clear vision of what’s right and what’s needed to make it right. They didn’t choose to be in those circumstances, but what makes them heroes is how they chose to react to a less desirable predicament! I was there for your crossroad intersection and you chose valiantly. As for the husband and parenting roles, in my humble opinion, they are a lifetime dynamic. We learn each day from our successes and failures. Our education is ongoing and we are graded constantly, but the education is also dynamic and never ending. No less heroic.

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