Sometimes I wish I knew. As scary as it is to imagine my last breath, I wonder how different I would live if I knew. Imagine having a jar filled with grains of rice that equated to the number of days in your life. I would have 4 jars on my counter and each day, each one of us would remove another grain until finally there were no more left. That would be the end. Can you imagine the perspective that alarming bit of knowledge would bring? If my husband had 10 days would I spend them resenting something he said out of a moment of frustration? If one of my children had a few breaths left, would I nag them for a grade or an unmade bed? What if I was down to two or three? Would I march in support of the latest cause or call people names on Facebook that I’ve never even met? Would I spend a single moment hating a President, a neighbor, a family member, myself?
Maybe we should all take a moment at the beginning of our day to visualize our jar. We may never really know the amount of time we have left but we are guaranteed with each rise of the sun to have one less.
Live better. Enjoy your life. Look into the eyes of the people around you. Study their faces. Be grateful for each wrinkle, each meal, every act of kindness and every moment you are given to live in a way that truly matters.
What if we knew? What if you knew? Would you live differently?
A few weeks ago I went to see Revive Us 2 in the theatre. It’s hard to believe that as people we have become so divided. How do we find unity in all this chaos? They spoke about priorities and how everything got so out of sorts. One of the best points I heard is that strength starts in the family. When families become so easily divided, how do we not expect our country to be divided? How can we put politics or beliefs before another human being? How come we choose something that doesn’t really matter over the people who absolutely do matter? When we allow forces to pit us against one another, we end up on opposing sides. There are no sides, there are just people. Do we really believe someone’s worth and character comes down to a simple vote, a religion or belief? How could our priorities be so out of whack and why do we settle for such shallowness? At the end of the day, none of this nonsense matters. Is our need to control and have the world match our vision really more important than living with civility? What does matter is how we live our lives and how we treat other people. We are here to love, not to fight and divide. Love has become conditional and I too have fallen victim to its destruction. How do we get back to being unified? We start with our own families. We fix that and then we extend it into the world. More about that in my next post. Take time to re-examine your priorities. Keep them in order. That is the first step.
I see the same question come up time and time again. “What can we do to fix this problem?” It doesn’t matter what the issue is. People seem to look outside into the world for some type of solution. Few are brave and honest enough to ask, how am I contributing to this problem and what can I do to change myself so that I become part of the solution? It’s easier to jump on the problem train traveling full speed ahead then it is to bravely step off and try to stop its momentum. All this talk about gun control seems crazy to me. Violence and hatred comes from within. We have a heart problem followed by a problem with self control. Violence comes in many forms so why can we only recognize it when someone shoots a gun into a crowd of people or plows a car over innocent souls? You want to end the violence? It starts with your own words, thoughts and actions. If you are on social media verbally blasting a particular group, YOU ARE THE PROBLEM. If you are obsessed in your thinking about taking someone or some group out, you are the problem. If you call people names and attack total strangers because they believe in something you do not, you are the problem. Start there. Don’t look out, look in. Fix your role and the part you play in the violence destroying our very humanity. Be accountable for the energy you bring to this space. Do no harm. Stop the violence coming from your own mind, mouth and heart. Be the difference. Change yourself, change the world.
There are two kinds of people in the world. People who do too much and the people who let them.
As a parent, I have raised my kids to do their share. I don’t allow them to compare themselves to other kids and to use that comparison as an excuse to do a half assed job when it comes to their responsibility. Do your part to the best of your ability every time you do anything at all. That’s my philosophy. I do think I did cheated them a bit by not reinforcing to not allow people to take advantage of them. It’s okay to be kind and do things for others. It’s not okay when the scale is always tipped one way.
As I step back and look at some older people in the community, I realize now how the ones who have picked up the slack for others have taken a real beating. I see the toll it takes on their own mental and physical well being. I also see the ones who took advantage of their endless giving regardless of the toll it’s taken. I’ve always believed the world would be better off if everyone took care of their own responsibilities. That is the way we all carry a load that never seems too heavy. It’s when we carry our own garbage and allow others to pile theirs on top, when we see people suffer in the form of physical and mental ailments. How can someone who puts everyone before himself, properly care for his own well being?
I can’t help but ask myself who is more at fault. The people who willingly take advantage or the people who willingly let them.
When I look back on my life a year ago, I am moved to tears by the gratitude I feel for some much needed change. For years I took a backseat in my own life. I accepted the circumstances and allowed myself to play the victim. At some point, I knew enough was enough and every intention and choice I made purposefully moved my life in a different direction. I am beyond happy now. Until I could picture myself feeling elated and peaceful, there was no way I would bring that image into reality. I had to want it enough to believe it was possible which then led me to find a way to make it possible.
Remember, where and who you are today will not be the same as where and who you will be a day or even a year from now unless you are too afraid to make a move. The same behavior and repetitive negative thoughts will only lead you down the same road. If you want to explore new, exciting ground then you have to take the first step in a different direction. Don’t wait any longer. Do it today!
There are some weeks where absolutely everything that could possibly go wrong goes terribly wrong. There is so much comfort in knowing that these short spells do pass and tomorrow offers a brand new day and a clean slate filled with hope and faith. I used to feel panicked when the world crumbled at my feet and I couldn’t figure out to put it back together. Now, I know that even when things don’t seem to go as planned, the unexpected twists and turns lead to a better place. So hold on! Keep the faith and remember that life unfolds the way it should, not always the way we think it should and that’s okay.
These words have never echoed in my heart like they do today. I can hear the discouragement in people’s posts. I hear it in their words and I can see it in the eyes of most people I meet. We are all thinking the same thing? How can we fix a world that is so broken? How can we move past damage that almost seems irreparable?
These are tough times. I see people looking for someone to blame. The truth is, we are all to blame. We cannot point a finger at a single person and honestly believe he or she is the real cause. No one has that much power. It takes an infestation of many minds and many hearts to see damage as great as this. We expect the most broken to fix themselves but the kind of leadership that would take is unrecognizable to the ones who need it most. Change and healing start with each one of us. We the little people must be the game changer. The big people, the ones who own the limelight have failed us miserably. It is time for the little people to start the ripple of respect and healing that screams so loud that there isn’t a soul too lost to hear it. We must come together for a cause that is greater than each one of us. Have we become too spoiled? Are we selfless enough to sacrifice our own needs for the greater good? I will not contribute to the further destruction of my country or a single human being in it. I will not play a game that has consequences that will devastate a country I love. We all send out energy. Everything we do and say is like a ripple that keeps on going. Send out love. Focus your time on energy on what is right. Dwell on the positive. Lift the vibe up. We are low enough.