‘Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite. Or waiting around for Friday night or waiting perhaps for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil or a better break or a string of pearls or a pair of pants or a wig with curls or another chance. Everyone is just waiting.’ ~Dr. Seuss
I know what you’re thinking. What a joyous blog title right? Where is she going with this? Has all her recent darkness overcome her and now she’s finally lost the plot entirely? No. No I really haven’t.
We are all so scared to talk about dying. About death. We ignore it until it happens. Then we’re horrified by it and can’t deal with it all that well. But guess what? It’s going to happen to all of us at some point. Yes. You too. Even if we live until the oldest that is humanly possible. Even if we pass away peacefully in our sleep. Our time here on this earth is limited. It’s the only certainty of life.
Do you pay attention to that fact?
When people are diagnosed with a terminal illness and they’re given a small amount of time, suddenly it’s precious. They and the people around them become very aware of that fact. Petty arguments seem futile as does the daily slog of life. What really matters and is important suddenly becomes paramount. Bucket lists are born. People make more time for each other. Check in a little more often. Support each other and assist them in getting as much done in this life that they always wanted to do. It’s beautiful.
This is how we are when people are dying. But the thing is… Shouldn’t we live like this always? Aren’t we all dying, every single day? A little bit? Who knows when your number will be up. I’ve seen it first hand. It can happen to anyone, anywhere at any given moment. Why do we wait for a terrible diagnosis to start living the life we should have been living all along? Why do we wait until it’s too late to say the words we wished we’d said? Just say them. What have you got to lose? Face?! Oh yes. That’s very important. Keep your face.
Yes I know. Easier said than done. We all too easily get caught up in life. In society. We let ourselves become trapped in the rat race. We’re on the treadmill, running like maniacs until our hearts pop. But it’s a treadmill. You can get off it. You’re more powerful than you give yourself credit for.
Imagine you were given six months to live. What would you do? Where would you go? Who would you make peace with? Would you regret anything? Would you wish you’d had the courage to just do what you always wanted to? Here comes the big question now then. Why aren’t you doing that already?
Oh yes. I know. Work. And family. And responsibilities. What other people think. Let’s chuck money in there for good measure too. But really? You’re not making peace with someone because you have a job? You’re not saving up for that trip of a lifetime because you have a family? You never followed your true calling because you couldn’t afford it? I can’t afford to be a writer. I’m still writing. There’s always a little way of bringing in more of what you love. Stop being scared.
I am acutely aware that I am dying. It makes me want to live X
Twitter and all the irrelevant rest… Follow it if it makes you happy.