Another Birthday

Another birthday this month–not mine, you silly (that was last month, 56 long trips about the sun, and the treads are definitely showing the wear…), but this blog: two years old. For a project started on something of a lark–writing for a non-existent audience, with nearly non-existent time to pursue yet another Bob Obsession–it has proven to be quite a journey in many ways. The odyssey has been one from within and without, both reflective and relational. Putting thoughts to paper, as it were, seems to plumb some inner space, revealing dark recesses and flashes of light in often surprising ways, as the discipline of writing seems to free the spirit in some mysterious way. Writing for this blog, and elsewhere, has released thoughts, insights, and words which are, more often than not, as startling to me as they seem to be pleasing, and at times helpful, to others. And the surprise of new relationships and friendships, many virtual and virtually anonymous, yet friends nevertheless, rich with oneness of spirit and mind, is a real treasure–and frankly as surprising as the words I sometimes find myself writing.

I don’t write with any desire to be famous, or have the most hits, to get links on Instapundit or interviews in the media or a book deal. And I am pleased to inform you that my lowly objectives have been achieved beyond my wildest dreams: no fame, no fortune, no Instalanche, no book deals–and that’s perfectly alright, thank you very much. My goal–my hope, really–is to touch others in some small way, to perhaps give them a glimpse inside a remarkable profession–or even more so, a glimmer of God through the cracks in my own broken vessel. If I have accomplished this, even for a few, the effort will have proven more than worthwhile.

I write about bridges, and cooking turkeys, and the joys, frustrations, and insanity of a noble profession, and things I find humorous, or tragic, or touching, or life-changing, because changing life is what life is about: mine, my family, my patients, my friends, my readers. We of all creatures are aware of our own mortality; we get, to a greater or lesser degree, much choice in life’s summation: in many ways, we get to write our own novels. To come to the end of life with great wealth, or fame, or success, is perhaps understandable–even desireable in some small way–but invariably bequeaths a hollowness of spirit, a pathos of lost opportunity–for such things endure but briefly, if at all, after we ourselves return to the minerals of which we are made. To have touched those those with whom we have walked; to have drawn them in some way toward the light; to have left a legacy of goodness and mercy and grace behind: these are the things which will endure, things at once quite small yet vast and eternal.

I have watched, in this short time, many bloggers–bright, energetic, insightful, often excellent writers–post their swan song and fade to black, burned out on the relentless demands of daily delivery of content and commentary. I have at times wondered when, and by what manner, my own minor nova might flare, posting some sad goodbye to a few polite claps as my words fade like falling embers of a party sparkler. But hopefully–when that time comes–those words will linger with at least a few retinal ghosts, varicolored streaks of light against a dark background, that a few lives will thereby have been touched and changed.

I am grateful above all for those of you who visit here regularly, or rarely; who read, and visit, and think, and comment–or perhaps just wonder who this self-important fool might be. Thank you for listening, for spending those precious minutes of our too-brief lives–and especially for being friends.

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