“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”


In college, amidst the haze of late-night study sessions and questionable slices of “all-you-can-eat pizza”, my friends and I decided to embark on an innertube escapade.

Over a weekend, we braved the teasingly cold embrace of the Guadalupe River, floating down its whimsical currents not once, but twice. The first time, I had a humidity-fueled hair day and a pocketful of existential questions. The second, I had a sunburn and a newfound appreciation for waterproof shoes.

Heraclitus, that old Greek philosopher, once mused, “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.” I’d like to think he was onto something, and I can only hope he had better hair days than I did on my Guadalupe float.

Imagine life as a river, always gushing, always gossiping. You dip your toe in, and by the time you think, “Gosh, that’s cold!”, the water that just gave your toe a chilly embrace is miles away, probably telling its water friends about the weird toe it just met.

We humans, much like rivers, have this uncanny knack for change. One day, you’re stepping into life’s river thinking about your unpaid bills and that embarrassing thing you said three years ago. The next day, you’re pondering the mysteries of the universe and the audacity of avocados turning bad overnight. The river is different, and so are you.

There’s a magic to that, isn’t there? We’re like those lava lamps, always shifting, always mesmerizing, and occasionally a bit too warm to the touch. The world around us dances to our ever-evolving tune, sometimes a waltz, sometimes the Macarena—but always in motion.

So, the next time you’re by a river, dip in a toe, or if you’re feeling adventurous, hop into an innertube. But remember, by the time you decide to dip again, both you and the river have moved on to the next chapter, the next ripple, the next unexpected twist.

And that, my friends, is the glorious, unpredictable, toe-tickling journey we call life.

Stephen Boudreau serves as VP of Brand & Community at Virtuous Software. For over two decades, he has helped nonprofits leverage the digital space to grow their impact. To that end, Stephen co-founded RaiseDonors, a platform that provides nonprofits with technology and experiences that remove barriers to successful online fundraising. He is an avid (but aging) soccer player, audiobook enthusiast, and the heavily-disputed UNO champion of his household.

Copyright ©2024 Stephen Boudreau.