"your mine sunshine"

Source: w3i_yu2’s Flickr photostream

The recent passing of a friend prompted me to restart this blog. It’s always sad when someone dies—we all have friends or family who will miss our presence. It is even more tragic, I think, when that someone did more than merely exist, but made positive contributions to the world and fought for justice. In her short time, my friend was able to do so much good and spread so much joy that my simple writing here cannot express. When I think of her passing, I don’t dwell so much on the time we shared together or the remainder that I won’t get to spend with her, but on the generosity of her life that was cut short. The world really can’t afford to lose people like this, and her death is truly a loss for many.

We never know when death will take us—my friend’s untimely death attests to this—but we often live as though we’ll live forever. I’ll admit to putting off projects or goals (especially the lofty, saving-the-world type) because I think there’ll be a “better” day to do them. I plan for when I’ll “finally” be able to do ____ like I’ve always wanted to. I think about ____ and decide not to bother with it, because it seems so insignificant compared to what I think I can (eventually) do. My friend’s death reminds me that I don’t have to wait until I’m well accomplished to do good on these plans. My friend lived her life fully, graciously, and positively. She made her contributions, both lofty and small, and encouraged so many others to do the same.

If I die tomorrow, I don’t want to be remembered for all the things I never finished. I want to leave the world in a better state than when I entered it. This blog, my writing on sustainability and justice, is one of the “small” things that I can do and will make the time to do. Someone can read it and hopefully improve themselves and their community as a result. Completing my degree is another (small?) thing I can do, and use my academia-approved skill set to do even more good. There are countless other things I can do, and from now on, I will do. I will make renewed efforts to budget time for them, but live as though I won’t necessarily have a lifetime to finish them.

It’s rather appropriate to end the year with a resolution of sorts, even though it’s prompted by unfortunate circumstances. But my resolution is this: now or never.