Monday, March 30, 2009

Living my life over...

"If I had my life to live over" by Erma Bombeck - written when she was dying of cancer is the classic 'looking back in regret', wishing she had lived to the full. Wishing she had lived by 'seize the day' principles, no-regret filled moments.

We all ARE Erma Bombecks of a sort. We may not have the luxury of *knowing* we are dying or be given the chance to put life in order. Life can just be taken from us - any time, any day, any moment. Today, tomorrow, now.

Knowing one is dying is a privilege not a burden - at least in my books! It gives one the ability to try and do what one wanted to do, put things right, restore relationships - do an audit of life and have no regrets when the time comes. Yet sometimes when one knows, it is already too late. One has no time for 'living', only time for regrets - like Erma's.

So I have been thinking of a list of things that I want to live by. If I die today I would have lived life to the full, left no unwanted pain or anguish, created no barriers.

* I will love to the deepest and fullest that I can. Even when it hurts. Because love is all that will be left when I go...the love I gave and the love I left behind to bless the lives of those I cherished.

* I will give of my time, myself, my money, my life to those God has placed in my life - those I love, and those who love me - and to those who need my care.

* I will laugh more and whinge less. I would find laughter and joy wherever I can - even in the little moments of each day.

* I will care more about the things that matter in life - other people. And about the well being of our world. Not about my public image, money, success, fame, popularity, my reputation, my profiles.

* I will be kind. Kinder. Especially when unkind words or thoughts come to mind in the heat of a moment.

* I will be gentle with those I love.

* I will forgive seventy times seven. And then seventy times more.

* I will be more careful about whom I give my trust to - for trust is not a commodity I will waste on any one passing through my life.

* I will be more vulnerable with the people who love me, and more discreet with those who don't.

* I will reach out with both hands to enjoy whatever opportunities that come my way. I will not deny the good times of the now, because of the shadows of yesterday or the fears of tomorrow.

* I will try to know God - deeper, stronger, and with more of myself - not in the 'what can God give me today' way but in the 'what can I do for God more' way.

* I will choose to find work, and meaning, and activity in the things that change this world and make a difference. So that I give to the world instead of taking endlessly from it.

* I will appreciate the simple, everyday things of life - a great piece of music, a meaningful song, a good poem, a great novel, an enjoyable conversation, a kiss, a hug, a moment of humour. And so many more...

I will live life to the fullest. Abundant. And more. And when I die, I will hope there is no excessive grieving or sadness for my leaving, but instead a celebration of my life, memories of love, and a rejoicing in the past, despite the pain of a goodbye.