I’m grateful often but recently I got to thinking even deeper.
What if things went wrong?
I was nervous going into surgery in early November. Of course, there was an extremely high probability of success with a septoplasty procedure but I allowed myself to think of the alternative leading up to it.
→ That reflection grounded me.
It reminded me that the good life we have can change on a dime. Things can go wrong. Not only is no day guaranteed, but pain and suffering are almost inevitable at some point. The “when” is always uncertain.
Although I might not be able to control the outcome, I knew going in that I would be grateful to have the opportunity:
→ To live the life that I chose
→ To surround myself with great people
→ To experience things that I never could’ve dreamed of
→ To have a purpose-driven life that energizes me every day.
Gratitude, it just matters.
It’s often the grounding we need to remind us of the precious gifts we are given each day.
We uncover neat experiences.
We discover new opportunities
We are wowed by new people.
Unfortunately, one of the more difficult things in life is to accept that these don’t always last.
That although we might create great memories, these moments pass by.
That shouldn’t make us sad. It should give us hope.
Hope that more will be around the next bend.
Hope that we will continue to recognize these as they present themselves.
Hope that as we grow so will the value of the experiences, opportunities, and people we encounter.
We could be sad that the moments are ending or we could be grateful that we had them at all.
We choose our path. What happens on it is sometimes out of our control.
All we can do is embrace the moments that come our way because we never know how long we have them.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words but it’s also worth a time stamp. It’s an imprinted memory with a date circled.
It gives us a wormhole, of sorts, to the past.
How were we feeling at that moment?
Where was our life at?
What was happening to us?
Who were we becoming?
A single picture, a snapshot, can open up a wave of thoughts and emotions about life already lived.
How does that make us feel?
Are we sad that the moment is gone or grateful we had the opportunity in the first place?
Pictures capture moments. Moments become memories. Memories give us a view, although distorted, of our past.
It provides the perspective to live in the moment and not waste any of it because eventually, the present moments will become memories that we either capture with a picture or, more importantly, keep close by in our hearts.
Life ebbs and flows. Some days we are on the highest of highs and on others it’s the lowest of the lows.
Rarely, on the best days, are we ever thinking about despair or loneliness or how we are ever going to get out of this feeling. It’s only on the bad days
Rarely, on the best days, are we ever consumed by the passing watch hands and can’t wait for something to change and get us out of this nightmare. It’s only on the bad days.
Rarely, on the best days, are we ever comparing ourselves to others wishing we were smiling and laughing and being loved by everyone around us. It’s only on the bad days.
“Comparison is the thief of joy” as the great quote goes.
It’s always in comparison to others or to what we don’t have or to what is absent in our lives, that sucks the joy out of it. We all go through this and we know it’s not easy.
But, this too shall pass.
How quickly it passes can be directly related to our efforts in recognizing our triggers and our emotional state when those triggers come to fruition.
We can’t blame others. We have to take ownership and look in the mirror. We can fix this.
Is our worth tied up in others? Are we doing things that make us come alive? Have our decisions put us in stressful situations? How can we learn at this moment to make future moments more manageable?
These questions and others around it can help us focus on the problem areas of our life and address the parts that we need to improve. Generally, there is a “self” before them. We need to have more self-love, self-awareness, self-observation, self-control, etc.
Life can be hard a lot of the time but once we choose to make the effort to approach it in a way where we are in control instead of situations and people controlling us, we have a wonderful chance to lean into happiness more often.