“Life is effort, and I’ll stop when I die.” – Jerry Smith, Rick and Morty
Anyone else watch Rick and Morty? I can’t get over how ridiculously absurd and hilarious (albeit often gross) the show is. If you aren’t familiar, it’s an animated series (for adults) following the adventures of a kid and his scientist grandfather as they traverse universes to stop monsters and ease general chaos.
If that didn’t sell you, just trust me…okay?
Anyway, the other night we were watching an episode when the father character, Jerry, says the above quote. I couldn’t stop cracking up, but then I realized how profoundly true and relatable it is and proceeded to immediately write it down.
Life isn’t easy; I’ve talked about that before. But beyond the effort we put into our responsibilities, we often have to make that same concentrated effort into our “fun”, or those things which will make our lives infinitely more enjoyable.
Sometimes I’ll hear people remark about how exciting someone’s life appears to be, or how much travel this person gets to do. And though I understand certain things may be out of someone’s reach right now, whether it’s due to time, financial, or other constraints, I do have to chime in and say – they are making their happy.
That person most likely didn’t get roped onto a jet to fly overseas for a spontaneous Eurotrip. She saved her money, planned her time off work, and sorted out a thorough itinerary. She made concessions in other areas of her life, so that the thing that is most personally fulfilling, could be done. But the one thing she didn’t do was sit on her couch and lament that other people get to travel when she doesn’t. That other people are living their lives and she isn’t.
Apply this mindset to any other area of life. Sure, I could drag my feet all weekend and sleep in (something I don’t get to do during the week), or I could remind myself that what will actually make me a happier, more complete person is waking up early to meet a friend for a workout. Driving an hour through traffic to hike the beautiful coastline. Making an annoying grocery run so I’m never left hungry, and consequentially, irritable. Spending time researching local events and restaurants, so I can explore my city to its fullest capacity and not squander an evening with no bedtime.
We don’t live in a house (that Los Angeles apartment life, yo), but we have made due with a small potted garden outside our front door. Besides our succulents and cacti, our other garden beds require replanting each season. It’s not without effort that I get to see these beautiful blooms each day as I come and go. Each season we have to make a run to the nursery, pick out plants, unearth the dead ones, repot. We have to water and prune and keep the bugs at bay. It takes effort, but if gives us so much joy to see and smell each morning, why wouldn’t we do it? That logic is simple, right?
You can live your life, or you can let it freely pass by. And if you’re not living it fully, if you’re not actively seeking out those things that fuel you, that make life worth living, well then…what are you doing?
Just for fun, I put together a little video of our afternoon gardening. We decided to keep those leafy plants from our fall garden, as we couldn’t bear to rip them out. Kipling was obviously a lot of help.