Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Just Some Thoughts ...

I will catch up on the days either later this afternoon or tomorrow. The site is not always accurate displaying my posts anyway …
The “One Month to Live” study is certainly a thought provoker and I cannot see where it would do anyone anything but good. For this entry, I am not going to blog about the book, but about things I have recognized.
I really cannot say I have FULLY been living as though I only had a month to live. TRYING to do that when life is going at its normal pace is virtually impossible. For example, last week my father discovered water in my yard. He looked under the water meter to see LOTS of water. I was unaware such a thing could happen, but I had a big problem. There was a leak in the pipe under the ground. L Because my bill is automatically drafted, I had not looked at it to notice it had been steadily rising for about 3 months. Now it is triple the normal amount and I had used 16,000 gallons of water instead of the normal 7,000. These things can put a kink in a no-regrets life, but I keep it in the back of my mind.
In my world, yesterday was a sad day for many people. It marked the 1 year anniversary of the passing of my hero, a 9 year old little boy who fought brain cancer. These types of days can also captivate our minds, but in a good way. I spent time this weekend focusing on him, his life and his family instead of blogging. His parents taught me a lot about living life to the fullest. (They were the inspiration for the No Regrets poem.) I missed class on Sunday night in order to make an arrangement for his parents to take to his grave. That seemed more important. I have no regrets regarding my decision.

          I have given some thought to another wonderful example of living life looking at the big picture. This lesson was taught to me by my aunt. She is the mother of many foster/adopted, special needs children.
Many years ago, she was faced with a difficult situation. The way she handled it really spoke volumes to me. She had an adopted daughter who suddenly got very sick. The little girl, Erin, was hospitalized in intensive care and we were not sure if she would make it. My aunt stayed with her daughter around the clock. My uncle and the aides took care of the other children at home. In the midst of my cousin’s sickness, another situation happened.
There was a little boy, Joey, who had lived with my aunt and uncle as a foster child for most of his life. He had parents, but they were unable to care for him due to his numerous problems. However, his father visited him on a regular basis. One weekend, while my aunt was at the hospital, this little boy unexpectedly passed away. Luckily, his dad was also with him, which gave him peace that nothing more could have been done.
The arrangements were made and we had his funeral. My aunt did not go. At first, I was perplexed, as I am sure many others were. I could not imagine not going to my child’s funeral. My aunt explained the facts to me.
She said, “I have given Joey love and taken care of him for his whole life. I have done all I could do for him. Now, he does not need me and will not even know I am there. God has him and will take even better care of him than I can. Going to the funeral will prove nothing and will not help; it would actually be a selfish act, and I have nothing to prove. I kissed him good-bye and told him I loved him before I left. I have closure. At this point, Erin needs me. She knows if I am here or not and she is very sick. I have to stay with her and be content with what I have done for Joey. I have no regrets with him or his life.”
Looking back, I realize that I would not have that maturity or such a clear, peaceful perspective. However, my aunt and uncle have lived a clear life and avoided regrets. I want to be more like them.

This study will most likely take me more than one month to complete … and that’s okay. I WILL complete it. I appreciate all of the visits and those who are also challenging themselves with me. It warms my heart to see the visiting audience, especially those in other countries. We are all so different; yet, we all are the same. We were born and we shall die.
As I look around, I can see guidance in the most unusual places … as far as living and enjoying this life. Even my little man, Swayze, teaches me. A puppy, a child or a person with special needs seem to hold the secret of a life lived to the fullest. They enjoy every minute. They do not stress over things they have no control over and they are happy just to be doing what they do. Even as I sit and type, my little companion simply enjoys being near me. I placed a pillow on my lap in front of the keyboard and he napped. He is happy and thoroughly enjoys his life. So sweet …

Taking notice of the small things,

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