The Long Ride

When I began writing about my adventures and mental musings two and a half years ago, “Looking for the Long Ride” was really the only name that fit where I was at as a person or where I felt I fit in the overall scheme of things. Life to me at that point was more of a long wave type of thing—catch it way back and ride for awhile until you hit the beach.

This blog’s title actually came from a moment in time during the late sixties as I hitch-hiked through western Europe. Frustrated by people who would stop and pick me up only to take me a couple of miles down the road and leave me in a much worse place to hitch a ride, I began asking potential rides how far up the road they were actually going. Taking only the longest rides (barring pouring rain), made life a lot easier and less frustrating to me and that is how the concept of looking for the long ride developed.

However, it has recently come to my attention that a point in time exists where we stop “looking” and begin “riding” as it were.

Looking to me implies a searching or a seeking—looking to make a connection rather than an awareness of how we are currently “connected”. Living in a state of always looking almost implies a never finding what we are actually turning our attention to or seeking.

Sounds confusing—not really: it’s a matter of perspective.

Not that continuing to “look” or “seek” or cast our view towards something is inherently a bad thing. I think we have to keep learning and looking forward to what each day has to bring. However if looking keeps us from enjoying the moment, then that is where we need to re-evaluate our life and make adjustment.

So, with that said, I must now say that I am no longer in a state of constantly “looking for the long ride” but at age 60 have finally realized that I am on and in the long ride. No longer looking but a part of that which I always, in the back reaches of my mind, aspired to. Not that I am complete—not that I have attained the place of perfection or total satisfaction and achievement—but what I am in process of is realizing that what I have in my hand or what is currently my life, is much more profound than I had here-to-for realized.

I believe that I am not alone in this—that many of us have lived our lives without fully committing to what each day has for us. In not fully committing, we really can’t move forward and into that which the future holds for us.

I wish I could find the quote by John Maxwell that really speaks to what I am trying to evoke. What I remember about the quote is he said that at the moment that we commit to something a shift happens which opens up all kinds of possibilities that were there all along but not attainable until we committed.

That being said, I am now aware of the fact that I’m committed to where I am, at this very moment. This is where all of my actions and in-actions have led me. My life is as complete right this very minute as it ever has been—I don’t need to keep looking for something to happen to me in order to feel as full as I am right now in this moment.

Not that I won’t be tested in this, my new way of looking at life: I am sure there is one just around the corner. Nothing I think or feel fits within a nice convenient sized box that can be mailed anywhere in the world for one flat-rate price. I will have to refine and re-define what it is that I am reaching for or seeking.

However, at this very moment, I am more than blessed with a fantastic wife, great kids and a wonderful way to make a living. Even the garden is doing well—the beans are canned and waiting for a suitable dinner and the corn and tomatoes are just around the corner. My past has been interesting, to say the least, and I am sure that my future is one in which I am taking part in right this very moment.

Enjoy your ride today!

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8 Responses to The Long Ride

  1. Steve Hart says:

    It is so hard to have some contentment in the moment. I’m always thinking “what else should I be doing” , making plans for when I wrap up my current project. I’ll be happy or relieved when such and such has occurred. I’m happy or content when loved or appreciated, the warmth of accomplishment doesn’t last too long.I hope your ride was long this weekend,Steve

  2. Terry Henry says:

    Steve: thanks for stopping by. I hope you caught the Pauline reference to not having yet attained that which we aspire to. Yet we all have to start someplace. I remember a book by Ram Das (aka Richard Alpert, Tim Leary’s friend) published in the late sixties. It was called “Be Here Now” and I have always thought he was on the right track if not a little (maybe a lot) looking in the wrong place for contentment. But the title says it all. Even in our conversations we do too little listening and too much crafting our own reply that we miss what’s happening many times. Isn’t that what dialogue and diplomacy is supposed to be all about—fully listening and then responding in kind. Anyway, my last ride was 25 miles and we took our time and explored new roads—it is always nice to hear from you.

  3. Carey says:

    Godliness with contentment is great gain. I’m glad you’ve been able to settle into it. Some folks never do. Furthermore, haven’t you heard? 60 is the new 30.

  4. ded says:

    How I long to hear all my brothers and sisters see this perspective for themselves!! Amen. We are in Christ and He is complete. In that place there is nothing needing to happen for us to feel whole, wholly connected and always fulfilled. Yet, the journey with Him reveals glory unto glory; in each moment, the change at hand confirms He is new every morning.

  5. Terry Henry says:

    Sensing His hand in this perspective and actually living in it and reveling in the moment are two distinct places. I am aware of this process taking place but don’t want to give the impression that I am already there/here. Yet, as a man thinks, so he is and the more we begin to believe in this fullness, the more we will inhabit it (me thinks?).

  6. Len says:

    Nice thoughts as usual Terry. Did you enjoy the Springsteen/Seeger Sessions cd?

  7. Terry Henry says:

    Springsteen did a great job with the Seeger stuff. Interesting thing is that I liked the ones I liked Seeger doing and the songs I didn’t, Springsteen doing them didn’t make me like the ones I didn’t. Comprendé

  8. Lonitra says:

    That’s not just the best asnewr. It’s the bestest answer!

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