This is all I ever wanted from life, Gary Lightbody sings, over and over. At first it seems like a straightforward wishlist, a rundown of joys detached from the clutches of money and power and fame. But maybe it's more than that; maybe it defines our growth, our lifetime's stages, through our desires—intimacy, glory, honor, stability. Maybe "all I ever wanted" will be different next year, five years later, in a decade, when we look back at sixty-one. I know that someday things that are of utmost importance now will only be afterthoughts, and that what seems peripheral in this moment will eventually be pushed to the forefront.
I know that at some point I thought place, time, and circumstance were all that mattered and all that will ever matter, and now those days are so far behind I can barely recognize them. I know that at some point I couldn't completely grasp how hope could be claimed—ours, how fullness could both be stumbled upon and earned. I know that at some point it was hard to imagine opportunities, infinity, but now the spaces are wide and open, and we are free to be well, to work hard, to do good, to go above and beyond.