Facing Death Taught Me...

1) Big Girls Do Cry and sometimes it is okay to be damn proud of it. Holding in feelings can destroy
you. It’s so cathartic to let them out and it’s very healing. We don’t have to wear our emotions on our
sleeve but we have a right, men and women to express our emotions. Passion and sensitivity is a gift. My older sister use to tell me when I was a little girl that I was blessed with sensitivity. Most of my life, I saw it as a curse. Many times, even my kids, have teased me for it unless they needed it tapped into towards them, their hurts and hurdles through life. Crying is part of life, Jesus cried. Let the tears flow, happy tears, sad tears, and moving tears.

2) As Milton Berle said and the first thing I saw on my first day of chemo on a sign next to my chair, “Laughter is an instant vacation” and we all need an escape. You can’t laugh without smiling and smiling puts you in a happy mood and others. Smile frequently and laugh as well. If you find yourself with others that can’t take smiles and laughter, maybe you are in a down crowd. Life is meant to be enjoyed not dreaded.

3) Little moments in life are those to be cherished the most. When you are flat on your back, your goals are simple, walk to the mailbox at the end of the driveway. Be able to eat a meal. Watch a movie from start to finish without falling asleep. Too often we are so busy and so easily disappointed because we can’t travel to Europe, buy the hot car, or put the kids in everything they want to be involved in that we forget about simple things that truly matter. I was reminded of the joy of decorating cookies for Christmas, you are never too old to use colored icing on cookies and have bragging rights! Kids love it so try doing this instead of taking kids shopping for new toys. Sit on the porch with a new book instead of going on a shopping spree. Take the kids out to feed the ducks crackers and watch your kids go from being scared to you being frightened by how close the children go to the wild animals!

4). Forgive those that have trespassed against us. Harboring ill feelings and not letting go of what you can’t control is like a cancer growing inside of you. However, give yourself permission to divorce drama from your life. I learned to take a personal inventory of those around me. Evaluate who is bringing value to you, who is building you up and accepting you for who you are and making you feel good as a person. If they are not, as much as you may love them and cherish them, you need to consider letting them go. Life is about loving others, but also about loving you. If someone is constantly badgering you or subtly putting you down and making you feel less of yourself, this is not a good way to finish out your life. You must be whole and be able to give to those who love you the love you have for yourself. That love won’t be complete without wholeness inside.

5) Hold to your belief system. If others shun you for staying true, perhaps they are not meant in your inner circle. God created us uniquely but with a goal for us to attempt to follow in his footsteps. Our perception of those footsteps may vary and we may be at different steps in the journey than others. If others are lagging behind, don’t allow yourself to be pulled back into an unhealthy unjust unholy place. Evil and contempt breeds unhappiness and resentment. Always maintain your character, integrity and values. Christianity and faith must be your stronghold and foundation.

6) Life leads to death. And death leads to life, life everlasting. It is imperative that you stay on the path of faith, prayer and development of your Christian journey for you know not when it ends. It is so much easier to accept your death and others that will die before you if you have reached some sort of acceptance and understanding of the passage of this life to the next. It also aids in helping those
around you to accept yours. Peace will come with our crossing over if we have faith in God, in Jesus’s words. But to truly comprehend we must continue and be committed to a higher level of our spiritual development. This is defined by each of us differently. But in each of us, it must be a higher priority. I have faced the reality of my mortality and accepted it.

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