Omkari Williams

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Live To the Point of Tears

The philosopher Albert Camus said, "Live to the point of tears." He wasn't talking about inviting suffering into your life, he was talking about living full out, with courage, passion, and a commitment to yourself that you will deeply engage with your life. We are moved to tears by joy, marvel, delight, and, of course, sadness, grief, and pain. On both ends of the spectrum we are moved to tears by the emotional experiences that life holds.

The question is how often do you allow yourself to live at those passionate edges? Most of us try to stay in the middle because it feels safer, less volatile, less challenging. And yes, the middle is safer and easier, but it's also a bit squishy, a bit bland. The real juice in life lies on the edges. I think that desire for juice is why some people love roller coasters, drugs, or lots of drama in their day-to-day, the intense rush makes them feel so alive.

I think we can all relate to that longing to feel fully engaged in the ongoing and evolving story that is life. But what if, rather than artificially created excitement, you took the risk of having courageous conversations that put you on that edge; conversations in which you explored and shared some of the scarier truths of your life? Conversations that nurture your growth, feed your soul, and strengthen the connections between you and those you cherish.

Living to the point of tears also means asking questions, being curious, not only about what happens to and around you, but also curious about your response to what happens in your life. It is in exploring the why of our behavior that we are lead, inexorably, to the story that we have written for ourselves.

Living to the point of tears requires a willingness to sit with the discomfort of sometimes not knowing and the uncertainties of discovery.

Our lives feel as if they go by so quickly. One season becomes the next in what seems like no time at all. But when we live to the point of tears it's almost as if we expand time. It is as if that full engagement actually stretches time and each moment becomes distinct and notable.

Living to the point of tears means living with eyes wide open, confronting life as it is rather than avoiding, what are sometimes heartbreaking, truths. As hard as that can be it is in that willingness to embrace the bitter as well as the sweet we find a life well and truly lived.

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