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Life is for Living

Life is for Living

Text by Melinda Taylor Schoutens

I am a huge believer in the notion that life continuously offers lessons if we take the time to observe. Teachings appear everywhere, from the simplest to the most profound experiences. And the overall takeaway during the pandemic was that tomorrow is not guaranteed.

With these thoughts, I felt it was time to embrace the mantra, “Life is for living.” By living, I will appreciate that my life is finite and pay homage to those who no longer walk among us.

I would make the most of each day.

And thus, my adventure began this past winter.

Viewing the world in a new way propelled me into the forgotten realm of childhood. A world filled with magic and wonder. I reverted to being a kid that anticipated the newness of each season. And this included the first snowfall and the tiny pleasures sprinkled themselves all over.

As I returned to my youth, I remembered that children do not typically spend their days calculating every move they make. Also, they don’t often stop to question the risks involved when flying down a mountain on a sledge. Indeed, most youngsters naturally welcome the novelty of ice skating outdoors and tubing down runs that would leave most adults breathless.

As I participated in every journey with my offspring, I wondered when do people start to lose their sense of curiosity? And why do some of us move so cautiously that we become spectators of our lives?

While I learned to push past the fear this winter, I became a full participant in life once again.

But it wasn’t always exotic and risky; life happened slowly and peacefully.

Nonetheless, each moment felt miraculously precious.

For instance, when I watched the sunrise, sunset, or the full moon lit up the night sky. Or when I sat and listened to the birds or ran through a forest. They were all elements of living. Life is everything from monotony to grand adventures, covering fast, slow, wild and peaceful. Furthermore, lessons and beauty surround us at all times. And whether by choice or through circumstance, we receive opportunities to start over throughout our lives.

These fresh beginnings can be nourishing and healing or painful and heart wrenching. Starting over after the confines of the pandemic felt like removing dark glasses and seeing the world through a colourful lens—a world full of potential and possibility, beauty and awe.

The simple words of my newly adopted mantra, “life is for living,” seemed to be the perfect reminder to live this life fully.


Editor’s note:

The BCT is, as always, grateful for Melinda’s support.

Melinda is the co-author of the books Fresh Air Kids Switzerland – 52 Inspiring Hikes That Will Make Kids And Adults Happy”, “Fresh Air Kids Switzerland – My Book of Discoveries “, and “Fresh Air Kids – Hikes to Huts “. You can find the books (in English, German, or French) online from Helvetiq and in all major bookstores in Switzerland. You can follow Melinda and her family’s adventures on their Instagram account @fresh_air_kids and the Fresh Air Kids website.





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