In Varanasi, India the epicenter of Hindu Faith there are Holy men better known as sādhus. The sādhu is solely dedicated to achieving mokṣa (liberation). The sādhus have left behind all material attachments.
A few years ago I saw a documentary Varanasi, India: “Beyond” by filmmaker Cale Glendening.
The main thing I can recall was how some sadhus keep items to remind them of their mortality.
Those items serve as a constant reminder that we are only here on this earth for a certain period of time.
Throughout our lives, we make decisions and we might think we are here forever.
But every once in awhile we get a reminder that we only have a short period of time to do certain things.
Half a Decade as a Father
Exactly 5 years ago I became a father.
In my life, my daughter serves as reminder of why and how I should stop and enjoy life.
Yesterday I decided not work as much as I have been doing these past few months.
I sat down with one of our closets friends on the beach, as my daughter Daniela was enjoying the water and the beach.
I saw her run in an out of the water, I saw how she studied the waves and how the shore reacted to them. It quickly reminded me that just a short while ago we moved to the beach.
She was about 18 months old and I would have to hold her tight as the sound of the waves intimidated her. The waves were giants and with time she has grown and they are at the same level.
My daughter knows that she must respect the waves and other things in Mother Nature.
I am always amazed on how independent my daughter has grown to be. At this stage in life she wants to do things on her own. Every once in awhile she will want Dad to step in and fix a thing or two for her.
Just a few days ago I was so proud of her as she grabbed a book before going to bed. She started practicing the sounds of the letters her mom had taught her.
As these 5 years have gone by my role has changed from wanting to build equity and a long-term, stable, financial life, to wanting to build experiences and enjoy my daughter as much as I can.
My priorities have shifted and I can certainly say she is the source of most of my happiness.
We’re getting ready to celebrate her 5th birthday, catered around experiences she wants to have. Learning something from a sādhu has made me think that I want to seek liberation by distancing myself from material things that don’t add value.
Focusing on Living
I think of how we have so much more to live with her. I will do my best to create more experiences with us and around family.
I think of the great experiences we have had with her. It makes it extra special that she is born around so many holiday festivities.
As I look into the next 5 years, I realize that in a few blinks of our eyes she will turn 10. For that reason I promise her that we will be next to her doing our best to bring her the best experiences possible.
Yesterday I got a message from one of my platoon leaders during my time in the Army. Master Sergeant Quetell reminded me that my daughter is lucky to have me as a Dad. I have to say I am also lucky to have Lucy as a partner in this journey.
As I think of the new year and what is ahead of me, I can only think about what is ahead for our 5 year old little girl in 2016.
Happy Birthday Daniela
I wish Daniela an awesome year #5.
I can’t wait to see what is in store for all of us.
Happy Birthday Daniela.