Here are some things I’ve learned or re-learned over the last few weeks, as I subconsciously and consciously ponder the theory that there is in fact a time to every purpose under heaven.
1) Light years and lifetimes exist between expecting something and being prepared for it. Profoundly grateful for how I’ve chosen to live in the space between. Experiencing things intellectually and logically has absolutely nothing to do with experiencing them practically and emotionally.
2) Let people who care about you care about you. That was hard for me. To admit I needed a shoulder. To acknowledge that I matter to other people. But in the dark hours, let the people who care about you supply the flashlight batteries.
3) We can’t choose what happens, but we can choose what we do, and how we respond. Yes, happiness can be a choice. And sometimes circumstances preclude that particular choice. Even so we can choose the positive, and choose to move in a positive direction filled with light.
4) The silver lining sometimes is tarnished black. Know that it’s there, but put no pressure on yourself to polish it up right away.
5) People will surprise you. In good ways and in bad. Waste exactly no time on the latter and use the former to put positive energy in your tank.
I don’t know what to do or think or feel. I can’t imagine anything will ever be as good as it was. I suppose at some point I’ll stop making everything an absolute and relative comparison.
For now, I’m identifying and recognizing and enjoying the love I do have around me. While it’s no substitute, it does offer valuable emotional sustenance.
It’s love and happiness despite and in spite of losing dad. But it’s love and happiness nonetheless.
[As an aside, kind of…experienced-based…when you know of someone who is going through something, don’t do nothing because you’re not sure what to say or do, or because you don’t want to intrude…don’t suggest that people “call if (they) need anything,” because chances are they’ll never call…they don’t know what they need…here are a few things that helped me/us greatly:
—Emails/cards/messages simply saying “I’m thinking about you.”
—Gift certificates for local take out, mani/pedi, etc.
—Insistence on picking up the kids or delivering dinner.
I’m not talking big doings high ticket things. But if you have friends in pain and want to help them, help them. It makes a world of difference.]
Lessons everywhere. Always be learning.
And one more thing? I f-cking hate cancer.