I finished washing dishes after dinner

and leaned against the counter wiping my hands while reflecting on my life. It is a warm evening. For a moment, my kitchen felt alive with the choices that have shaped me into who I am.

In my life, I have been a paratrooper, a writer, a parent and worked more professions than I would care to admit.

My adventures have dipped and weaved. Into broad canyons, past roaring rivers, across war-torn battlefields and through dark forests... sometimes the darkest... often on moonless nights.

I have lost. I have won. I have seen the world undone.

I don't know how I'm still standing. I would be foolish in thinking it was luck. I would be brazen in assuming it was just my actions. Instead, I'll just sit back and continue to sigh, appreciating how remarkable it is that I'm still breathing.

So my advice to anyone who reads this is:

wash the dishes, clean the grill, keep warm on dark nights and create whatever art you love. Even when you're sure no one will see it. You might become a fool like me, who for one minute can reflect and see beyond who he is and appreciate who he once was.