by Gabe Berman – the author of Live Like a Fruit Fly

Archive for the category “birthday”

All We Need Is…

I’ve been alive for precisely 15,696 days and of those, I’m unsure how many I’ve woken up happy for.

Not too many unfortunately.

But this morning, upon opening my eyes, I met the world with an unforced, lighthearted smile.

And that, of course, is all that matters.

I’m writing today because yesterday was my forty-third birthday and I feel compelled to jot a few thoughts down.

So, here we are. Me writing and you reading.

Before I continue though, I’d like to thank everyone who ever took the time, even once, to read the words that are sometimes pushed through me. Especially these few right now.

And I know this is going to make me sound like a corn dog, and I also know that you know that I don’t care how I sound, so I’ll just come out and say that I have such love for you.

So much love.

And I wish nothing for you other than health and joy. And I wish exactly the same for all of your love ones. And all of your acquaintances.

And even all of your enemies, if you have any.

Because love is an elixir. And I have enough of it, in me, for all of them.

I’m now forty-three, and still haven’t experienced much worldly success.


But if success was measured by our ability to love unconditionally, I’m Warren Buffet. I’m Bill Gates. I’m every member of every royal family. All added together. And then multiplied by…

Fucking infinity.

And just like that, poof, I am now as compelled to stop writing as I was to start.

This is enough.

I feel the way I was destined to feel – even better than this morning.

Confident. Powerful. Gentle. Still.

I initially intended to tell you about an old man I saw on the boardwalk the other day. He was wearing khaki pants, a tan jacket, and a tan, unmarked baseball hat. He was walking alone. Competently, but with concentration. And since it was the day before my birthday, I saw in him my possible future.

I was going to also write about my ninety-four year old grandma who has fallen ill.

And, of course, I was going to mention my dad. I’d complain to him every year about getting older and every year he’d say the exact same thing.

He’d first remove his glasses, then slowly lift his head from the New York Times, and then finally say to me, “Growing older is better than the alternative.”

He was so right.

My god, he was so right.

I miss him so much.

Yesterday morning, upon waking, I searched through my memories for his smile. And when I found it, I meditated on it for a few minutes.

And now here I sit in Starbucks, teary.

But still confident, powerful, gentle, still.

So, why did I wake up happy today?

Maybe because I finally figured out who I am and what my true purpose is.

Who am I?

I am love.

What’s my purpose?

To be a beacon of it.

With that said, I know down to my mitochondria that worldly success is also on its way.


But in the unlikely event I turn out to be wrong about this, I’ll always be okay.

More than okay.

Because love can’t fail.

Love is automatically the antithesis of failure.

“I am like the Buddha when I decide to smile for no reason. But when I find myself smiling for no reason, I am the Buddha.” – gb


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