Sunday, January 3, 2010

A Life Worth Living....

It's that time of year again. The time when people reflect on the past year and resolve to do this or that differently in the next year. To be skinnier, smarter, more organized, make more money, spend more time with family. You know, in order to make their life better.

Now, I am not saying that these things won't make your life better. It's always good to be healthy and organized and have things in order. I am just merely noting the ridiculousness of making resolutions that many people break anyway. I think what would be better is to take a healthy, truthful stock of your life with a sober heart and mind. Because what I have found true for myself is that if you have a life worth living, then you have no need for resolutions. Because you are happy. Content. Fulfilled.

Hang on, don't click off the page, hear me out, because I have a point, trust me. You see, last year I decided to take a good sober look at my life, to see it clearly for what it is and not what it could be, or might be some day, or what it isn't. The key is to take your eyes off of what you don't have, and make a list of the things that you do, no matter how small. At first, this is very hard, because you will notice the things you haven't achieved or accomplished as well as the things that you want but don't have. These are always hard realities to face, when what we want is not what we have. But take a deep breath and look harder at that list. Chances are you have more than what you think you do.

One of the things I noticed was that I was surrounded by people, some good and some bad, but all contributing to the colorful nature of my life. I have an amazing husband that understands me so well that I never have to explain my crazy to him. I have some amazing children who love me in spite of my flaws and even if I don't agree with all their choices, I see who they are and how I contributed to that. I also have difficult people in my life, people who are friends but who lie and manipulate me. These people actually serve to help me appreciate those who love me with a pure heart. And they teach me patience as I wait for them to mature and deal with their stuff so they can become the friends and loved ones I hope they can someday be.

Yes, the economy is bad, but fortunately I have a place to live and food to eat, a car that is still running despite being 10 years old and I am thankful for those things. I have seen places in Africa where families larger than mine live, and trust me, I have more than enough in comparison. I haven't finished either one of the two books I am struggling to write and am now without a publisher, but that's OK. It will happen when it happens. Or not. Doesn't change the tapestry of my life much.

What is important is that I live a live worth living. I have made a difference in other peoples lives in small ways and big ways. Sometimes just by being me. Shocking I know. I still have the hope of someday feeding and caring for orphans in Africa, just not this year. But if it doesn't happen, I still say that I possess a life worth living. I suffer from depression and there is no cure. I still live a life worth living, even if some days I have to struggle to see it. It's not about the shortcomings, but the successes and I have lots of successes. My marriage for one. My kids for another. I'm also a pretty darn good friend, daughter and sister. And I can tell a good joke when I want to.

Do you see what I am getting at? We can make all the resolutions we want, but wouldn't it be better if we just turn around and appreciate the life we have, warts and all? I think so. I believe we would all be more happy and content if we would just take our eyes off of what we see as perfection and realize that our lives are perfect, because they are perfect for us. Tailor made for us in fact. If you could shift your mindset and wrap your brain around that, how awesome could that be?

So consider that, friends and loved ones. Embrace your life, because it is worth living. Not because of what you have or don't have, but because of the people in it who make your life rich and colorful. Yes, even the bad ones. Because even they serve to refine you. Even conflict is an opportunity to appreciate those who love you. And to learn to guard your heart and preserve it for those who need your love. A life worth living can be simple and boring at times, but it's wholly and completely yours. If you love it, then it's worth it.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful post. It's even made me rethink my resolutions... maybe next year I will be at the point you are now. Acceptance is key.

    Thanks for writing this.