“It’s not easy being me.”

“It’s not easy being me.”
That’s my line, my running joke.
And I usually smile when I say it.

It’s not easy being anyone.
Life is hard. That’s just the truth.
And if you neglect it, it will take hold and run away. And then the next thing you realize is…
What happened? Where did the time go?

It’s not a secret that I am always in pain. Some days it is excruciating. I cannot get up. I cannot stand. I cannot walk. It’s not easy being me.

I was just at an epic show at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael, CA. Phil Lesh, the seminal bass guitarist for the Grateful Dead, was playing with his friends. I was only ten feet in front of him and his friends. They were beyond amazing. I wore a smile the entire night.

And yet the entire night, I had the hardest time standing, my back was contorted and in so much pain. The music provided respite, however. I arrived home, and went on a walk with Taylor, feeling sorry for myself. Cos that’s what happens when I let myself. You can go through the worst thing imaginable (in my case, I was hit by a car as I was crossing the street), and by some miracle you survive. And for a while, you’re an incredible story, an inspiration. But then, life settles in and people forget. And all you are left with is the pain. Like I am. I don’t talk about it much, cos there is nothing anyone can do about it. I talk about it with myself all the time; and I get frustrated. Extremely frustrated. I am only human, after all.

I was walking Taylor tonight after coming home from the concert, in obvious pain, having a pitiful internal dialogue.

And then I saw him.

He stepped gingerly out of his car, not much older than me, walking step by step with a walking stick. And he looked at me as I looked at him. I wondered at that moment whether he knew the thoughts I had been thinking.

All of a sudden, while I was still in pain, I didn’t care so much anymore. He walked gingerly. He was clearly in pain. But he made no excuses. I didn’t know him. He didn’t know me. And I don’t know if we ever will. And yet, at that moment, I knew what he was going through, even if he didn’t know what I had been through. I could walk.

And that was more than enough.

Go Adventure. Go Travel. Go Live.

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