This post isn’t the one that was planned for today. In fact, I had a post planned for yesterday that never got published either. It reminded me this morning of the quote, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.”
Last night was the sudden passing of a friend of Joe’s family. It sent me into a tailspin even though I wasn’t personally close to the family. I spent the better part of the evening trying to wrap my head around what had happened and I’m still going through that a bit today. We just had a grief presentation at my internship on Monday for ways to help our students through loss, so I think that’s part of why this is sticking with me so much and why I’m so aware of the different types of thoughts I’ve been having. It’s also sticking with me because it reminds me how lucky I was after my heart-related incident in college (it still freaks me out to recognize and call it a heart attack, even if it was mild).
It made me think of the people in my life who aren’t as healthy as they could be, those with a history of illness, those who are just generally getting older. It also made me think back to the unexpected loss of Kelsey last summer.
I don’t want to bring anyone down, but I do want to acknowledge the fact that none of us, no matter how healthy or prepared, has the promise of tomorrow. All we have is today and, more specifically, right now. I am guilty of thinking primarily about the future, planning for things that I want to happen or that might happen, rather than living in the moment. While I think most people would agree that some degree of planning for the future is necessary, but there is a line between future planning and future living. I’m guilty of future living, of letting the present pass me by because I’m so stuck in the what-ifs. I’m also guilty of living in the past, devoting too much time and energy to things I can’t change.
I want to start living more in the present. I want to live in the now instead of in the maybe or the already happened. I had already started doing this to some extent with considering my job options for next year and realizing it was far more important for me to take a job that will give me flexibility to continue to explore my path rather than committing to something that could hold me back from truly enjoying the present moment. My decision about next year is a risk, but to me the risk is minimal when compared to the risk of letting my life pass me by.
We would all benefit from living more in the moment. Start by reaching out to those you love and telling them so. Sure they may already know, but this could very well be your last opportunity to say it. Reconnect to people with whom you lost touch and get rid of the people in your life who bring you down.
Life is far too short to be anything other than loving and loved.