Love Life or Love Life

I love a good oxymoron, a play on words, anything to get my brain to think and wonder. Rob Lowe’s newest book is called: “Love Life.” His title could really be more about his wife (the love of his life), about his love life, or what I think he really meant, which is to love the heck out of the life that is in front of us. In any case, Love Life is an interesting and thought-provoking memoir. I was a fan of his first autobiography, “Stories I Only Tell My Friends.” See, I like Rob Lowe. He plays interesting characters. From West Wing to Brothers and Sisters to Californication to Parks and Recreation, not to mention all the movies he has been in. Does Outsiders ring a bell? He does not play the same character again and again (as some actors tend to do), and I love that about him. When I happened across his first book, I thought it would be an annoying, pompous book from a famous Hollywood actor. It was nothing like that.

The writing is good, and while I do not know if he actually wrote it (who ever knows these days) it was still a compelling memoir of his life. He is very transparent about himself, his pros and cons, and you can tell in everything he says how much he loves his wife, two sons, and how important it is to him to be a dad. I loved this quote on the very first page:

“I think it was Alfred Hitchcock who said 90 percent of successful moviemaking is in the casting. The same is true in life. Who you are exposed to, who you choose to surround yourself with, is a unique variable in all of our experiences and it is hugely important in making us who we are. Seek out interesting characters, tough adversaries and strong mentors and your life can be rich, textured, highly entertaining and successful, like a Best Picture winner.” Page 1

It really makes you think about who you surround yourself with, and that while we do not always have a choice of who we interact with each day, we should focus on the situations we can control. Lowe never wanted to live a boring life, and neither should we! So get rid of the boring, the dull, and the uninspiring and bring on the adventure.

And, if you never take the leap and have more adventures, then you may never see success. Sometimes you have to have a few failures to find the gem. He discusses the different shows or movies he was involved in that did not make it off the ground, were cancelled, or just did not get the ratings.

“Maybe I’m in denial, but I don’t believe in ‘flops.’ You try something and it may not work. You try something and this time it might. You never know, and you have no choice other than to keep trying. The only time you flop is when you don’t learn something.” Page 148

Sort of like the Coldplay song, “Fix You” with a favorite line 0f mine: “If you never try you’ll never know.” I strongly believe that the tough times and disappointed moments turn into beautiful works of art. Sometimes we just have to have extreme patience as we go through the growing pains.

If you never try, you never know

(c) Unknown

If I had a song from 2012 that moved me, I think it would be: Coldplay’s, “Fix You.” I cannot get it out of my mind. It is amazing to me how emotional music can be and how easily it can tug at my heart-strings. Here are a few of the lyrics:

“When you try your best, but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?”

It is not the happiest of songs, but it is a song you can feel in your bones. I was running the other day (outside with music instead of on the treadmill), going down a hill, with my arms stretched out wide. It was a good feeling. That feeling of being free, relaxed, with no complicated thoughts bogging me down. Later in the song is my favorite line: “But if you never try you’ll never know.” That is the line that hits me each time. I think of different decisions Chris and I have made in the past year, and throughout our marriage. I think of professional experiences, friendships, and conversations with family members. It is a mantra about fear, taking risks, and chances.

If we never try we never know.

Anything is possible…

A friend shared the below video on Facebook yesterday (thank you, Kim)! I was curious when I saw her comment earlier in the day: “such a fantastic story. i am continually amazed at what the human spirit is capable of…” but the screenshot of the video did not spark my interest. When I got home last night, the thought came to me: “You need to watch the video Kim shared.” So I sat down to watch and by the end there were tears streaming down my face. It was just the video I needed to see.

Over the past few days my knees have been killing me. I’ve been running 6+ miles a day for a few years now, and never had any problems. We recently had issues with our treadmill and it has meant that I have done my runs outside. After a few weeks of running on pavement, my knees have been hurting. Last night I came home and took a long, hot salt bath in hopes it would help my knees to rest a bit. After watching the below video I realized my complaints are lame in comparison.

I am also completely addicted to Coldplay’s song “Fix You” which is featured as a cover in the below video. The story and a bit of “Fix You” might shift your perspective today. It is a bit long, but so worth it when you get to the end.

What did you think? Has your thought shifted?