We All Think We Have More Time
I've been confronted with an interesting life occurrence over the past week.
My ob/gyn found a lump in my boob.
This occurrence has lead to a cascade of occurrences. I had my first mammogram, my first ultrasound and my first biopsy all within a few days of each other.
Now I wait.
On Friday the 17th day of December 2021 I will find out if that lump is something more serious or not.
Everyone seems optimistic.
I seem detached.
Maybe this is because over the last few years I've become much more realistic with my expectations for life:
I have none.
That doesn't mean I don't have aspirations. It just means that I am okay with whatever happens, whether good or bad, because that's all I can do.
Since Andrew's neck surgery, heart attack and living through a pandemic, I've come to realize that there is nothing certain in life. That everything that you think is true can be turned false in a moment. I've been studying Python recently, so my brain more now thinks in code terms. Here is my life's code currently.
Most people's lives look like this in Python:
happiness = [ 'good health', 'good job', 'homeowner', 'stable daily routine', 'avoidance of conflict',]
hardship = ['bad health', 'no job', 'homeless', 'family and friend conflicts', 'bad habit formation']
hopelessness = ['depression', 'anxiety', 'feeling like you have no future', 'sadness', 'inability to cope with change', 'unhealthy coping mechanisms and addictions']
contentment =['inner peace', 'perseverance', 'one-day-at-a-time', 'enjoy the little things', 'always do your best', 'do what you love even if the odds are against you', 'confront conflicts to find resolutions', 'learn to forgive yourself and others']
while happiness True:
if hardship True:
How my life seems to work these days:
while happiness True:
if hardship True:
To me it no longer matters if something is true or false, it just means its another day, another breath, another moment. Have I been nervous? Yes. Have I been upset? Sort of. Would I change anything I've done or haven't done up to this moment? No. Do I want to live to be 100+ years old? Sure. But if I don't that's alright too. I am but a blip in the cosmic scheme, and if I live my life as best as I can while I am here, that's what matters. Will I be remembered? Maybe. If I am that's awesome, if not, that's okay too. I am but matter that is constantly changing, recycling and evolving.
Everyone seems worried (in their own ways) about me. After the biopsy I had some time to myself while I was driving home and I cried a little bit. And the thing was, it wasn't sad tears, it was good tears. If anything bad is to come to light on Friday, I can truly say I wouldn't do anything much differently with my life. I don't have regrets really (maybe if I thought about it a bit longer I might have certain things I'd tweak in my past, but I know I can't so that's all just fictional thinking anyways).
I've lived a pretty good life.
I've suffered and prevailed,
I've loved and hated,
I've lead and followed.
I've been able to spend lots of time with the people I love, and I've gotten to do the things I love.
I am okay with whatever tomorrow brings. I will face it, embrace it and keep moving.
I have no expectations for tomorrow, for I know that life is but a blink and everything can change so suddenly without any "reason" and who are we to say we thought "we had more time".
That's why it is so important to live authentically (whatever that means for you), and to not be afraid to say the things you want to say. If you have a thought like, "I really love my brother, I don't say it enough," then say it! If you want to be something new, then take the steps to do so. Go to that rock climbing class, take that German class, go on a hike or a road trip or learn how to scuba dive. Don't you ever wait because you'll "do it later."
Later might never be here.
Right before I posted this, I received an unexpected phone call -- the doctor's office called to tell me the tumor is non-cancerous. Was I relieved? I guess so, but I don't feel much different than I did before.