When you’re faced with your own mortality it causes you to reevaluate what’s important.
At the ripe old age of 37, death is not something I really contemplated before now. And then – wham! You’re diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and your whole perspective changes.
I know some people facing serious illness and terminal disease may be tempted to continue living their lives just as they had before. Changing nothing. And although I continue with the day-to-day tasks of everyday living as I always have, I’ve also been overcome by this strong desire to prioritize. To decide what is truly deserving of my time.
I don’t want to waste my time on bullshit.
I think questioning what is truly important is a good exercise for everyone to do. Are you spending the time you have in a nourishing and fulfilling way? Do you enjoy your work? Do you enjoy your time outside of work? Do you make decisions in line with what you truly want out of life?
Immediately following my diagnosis these questions started to creep into my head.
So what sort of things are important to me??
Number 1 – Family and friends. Having this ongoing rotation of all my favorite people coming out to Ohio to help us (and spend time with me) is such a gift… Just this morning Auntie L finally headed home. Sniff! Sniff! Miss M is still in a state of denial asking, “Where’s Auntie L? I wanna play!” Thank god the family and friend brigade continues tomorrow with Auntie M – who arrives tomorrow evening. Having all these loved ones around is not only helping me, it’s helping Miss M BIG TIME in terms of dealing with all the changes cancer has thrust onto our family.
So what else is important? Spending time doing things that bring me joy – dancing, traveling the world, being in nature, watching sunsets, listening to music, getting engrossed in a really good book, learning new things, helping others, being in New York City, meeting new people…
But even though I’ve figured out what’s important to me, the hardest step is incorporating these things into my life. Making them a priority.
So let’s all do it together. Let’s make the effort to prioritize the things that bring us joy. Find a few moments each day to do something enriching and enjoyable. Something that makes your day a bit better. That makes this life worth living.
If not now – when?
Make it happen. Peace to all. -T