I got the honor of celebrating with one of my former colleagues yesterday, who had finally finished his chemo treatments. It’s been a bit less than a year. He was 40 when he was diagnosed. This blog is not about the pain and sickness from his last year – but his life. No, really our lives.
In the blink, and I mean a blink, the “comfort” of our lives can change. The single words from a doctor, “It’s cancerous,” to “You’re fired,” to “It was a terrible accident and he’s gone.” It all is life changing. And, as we know, the unexpected can be expected to happen. How do we prepare? How do we get through life with the inevitable changes?
I was talking to my best friend this morning about some upcoming changes. I was crying (of course!) and he said, something good will come from what we are about to experience. He reminded me that these “new” experiences, will be some that we would not have had if we had remained in the “comfort” of our lives. So true – but, being mortal, it’s still difficult.
While my former colleague’s life will be changed forever by his diagnosis, mine may not. Yes, I can say I will remember how short and precious it all is … but I too will get caught up in the s*** of raising my teenagers, my work and all the rest.
But, for today, I want to live in the moment – not the future. I want to appreciate his journey. I want to know that if it were my journey, I would get through it too. I want to at least have this one day, where I remember how amazing it is to have this particular life – with all its crazy ups and downs.
As I was walking to the celebration yesterday, I stopped to buy flowers. As I was paying (and chatting, of course), the man at the shop told me the story of his partner’s fight through cancer. He started to cry as he shared it with me and then – in an amazing twist – he came around the corner, hugged me and thanked me for reminding him how precious TODAY is. WOW! I think I was the lucky one there.
So, to my former colleague: I love the way in which you moved through this year. I appreciate you allowing me to experience a portion of it. And, I can’t wait to meet you on the next 10 mile race course.
Until then, everyone, let’s just appreciate today. That’s all. Just enjoy today.