“There’s a bridge to tomorrow, there’s a bridge from the past, there’s a bridge made of sorrow, that I pray will not last. There’s a bridge made of colors in the sky high above. And I am certain that somewhere there’s a bridge made out of love.”
When I pass by a bridge, Milton Nascimento’s award-winning composition in 1967 would always play on repeat in my head. The message – so strong and so transcendental, the song “Bridges” with the vocals of jazz artist Sarah Vaughan is a meaningful piece about life and love.
So simple yet so striking.
Life is not generally about keeping score of your achievements, or the number of friends you have or the people that call you in your phone. It’s not about the number of times you have dated, the number of times you have been kissed or who kissed you, or which person likes you or not. Life is beyond that.
It is not about what sports team you are on or the hobbies that you like, or you grades, money, clothes. It’s not about being the friend of everyone or being alone. It is genuinely not about who does or does not accept you. That is just a part of life that I think most of us put value on, but it’s not what life is all about.
Life, above all is about who you love and who you hurt.
It is about how you see yourself, how you feel about yourself – knowing you are beautiful, you are talented, you are great, you are someone special – no matter what others say. It is about happiness, compassion, and trust. It is about doing what is right and making decisions based on what is sound.
Life is about replacing hatred with love, throwing away jealousies, building confidence and ceasing ignorance.
It is about what you say and how you mean it, asking for forgiveness and making things right. It is about seeing people for who they really are and not for what they have.
But most of all, life is about choosing to use your life and experiences to touch someone else in a way that could generate change.
That is what I think life is and what it should be about.
* Above is a painting of San Juanico Bridge, the longest bridge in the Philippines stretching at about 2km, connecting the province of Samar and Leyte.
“I can see him in the distance, on the river’s other shore. And his hands reach out in longing as my own has done before. And I call across to tell him where I believe the bridge must lie. And I’ll find it. Yes, I’ll find it. If I search until I die.”