Kansas City Royals pitcher Gil Meche is retiring at the age of 32, walking away from $12.4 million dollars if he plays another season.
Meche feels with his injuries and state of health, that he would not be able to play at his full potential, and staying in the game to get the $12.4 million is wrong.
Given that Meche has already made $40 million for playing for the Royals, still it is a noble decision that few people would make.
It comes down to this. If you were in Meche's shoes would you take the money, like some players have done, knowing you could not live up to the $12.4 million paycheck?
We're not talking about taking the money to survive or to support your dreams, which you may be doing now. But would you take the money if you really didn't need it?
Obviously Meche has asked himself this question. Some of us would not even think that taking the money is wrong, because deep inside we know that doing the right thing, and staying true to our souls is the right decision. But we don't want to entertain that notion if it means turning down $12.4, which takes courage.
In this economy, it would seem to make sense to take the money and run, even if we were financially set like Meche. However, he is playing the game of life to win
the ultimate score. His soul. Most will never understand that.
Meche knows that when the roar of the fans is over for him, and he looks back over his life,
he like all of us, will have to face the end of life questions. "Did I live my life authentically?" "Did I love?" "Did I help others?" "Did I live my best life?" "Was I true to myself?"
"Our job in this lifetime is not to shape ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it. "
~ Steven Pressfield, "The War of Art"