• Marcus Aurelius penned an epic short read titled Meditations. It’s composed of his own reflections and observations on life; written from the perspective of proverbial Father to Son. I now find myself a Father, and hopeful to pass down some of what I’ve learned in life to my son through my own words.

In light of the incident on April 20th, I’ve gained a new appreciation for each moment life has to offer. Peace can be broken in the blink of an eye and take weeks or lifetime(s) to find itself intact.

I’ve never had to run for my life before. I hope I never have to again. I hope Atlas can grow up in a world where he never fears for his life, safety or the well-being of the people he loves. Unfortunately, I feel like this becomes more of a wish as I see things in the world begin to show their true colors.

More than ever, I worry when I see the state of the world. It’s divided, tense and full of propaganda. I used to marvel at the propaganda that would disseminate its way through WWII and marvel at the lunacy of the people who believed the air-dropped pamphlets. Now, I turn on the news and see the same evil spreading its lies.

After the incident on the 20th, life hasn’t felt the same. There’s a new appreciation for moments of the heart, such as time with family.

I look around our world and see a very familiar narrative; ‘consume more, and you will be happy. Make more money and you will be happy. Acquire more and you will be happy.”

None of these things make me happy. In fact, most of my life has been spent in a consumer mind-set, rather than as somebody who lives from the heart.

I don’t need more things to be happy. In fact, I get a lot more joy giving things away than in acquiring them.

I look in Atlas’ eyes while I hold him, and he has never felt more dear. While I’ve known in my head he was a blessing, it took some time for my heart to feel the same about him; transforming the way I view the work required to care for him as an opportunity, rather than an obligation.

Sometimes you’re fortunate enough to have a wake-up call in your life. Many people don’t get that opportunity – or listen to it when it happens. Someday, I hope to look back with my entire family and thank God for how incredibly lucky, blessed and protected we have been – in all dimensions of our life.



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