I recently unearthed some old photos, and this was one of them. Me, at 35, with a big Dorado I’d caught in Costa Rica on a charter with two wonderful locals (one of them in the pic with me). Also on the boat was my Dad, whom I’d just met for the first time in 30 years, so that was pretty huge. All in all it was one of those experiences you never forget. I don’t like to be cruel to animals, but I do eat fish (and this fish fed dozens of people), so I eventually got over the violence of the process of having ‘faced my food’. I respected that fish after battling for 45 minutes to land it. It was exhausting, and exhilarating, and beautiful (the most colorful thing I’ve ever seen), and sad, and zen, and a very real and powerful experience. Not everyone would want an experience like that, or appreciate it, and that’s fine. For me it was a defining moment that marked a transition in my life, and made me feel empowered to be independent and take some risks. Life offers us opportunities of all kinds, and we each make different choices reflecting our own values. What’s important is that we honor ourselves in the process of deciding which experiences (and people) to embrace, and which to avoid. And that we realize we do have a choice.