I am not one to think things happen in life for a reason. I don’t, nor will I ever believe, people die and catastrophes happen as some cruel way to teach us something. It is just not how my brain works. At the same time, I do believe during hard, different, difficult times, we can ask what lessons we can learn from life. I have used this approach, thanks to a wonderful therapist I saw about ten years ago, and it has helped me stop and refrain situations and causes me to look for appreciation instead of staying on the complaining train.
I sit here in our living room next to our new puppy listening to music with my husband as our six-year-old is asleep upstairs. It is such a treat for a Monday night. Normally weeknights are rushing from one thing to another without a time to pause, without a time to breathe. During the business I often long for a time to pause… honestly, I yearn it.
We were supposed to be spending spring break at Disney World… ok that was the plan a week ago after we changed it from Disney and a cruise…. anyway our break was going to be filled with fun and adventure. As much as we were disappointed about not getting to go, I can’t help but appreciate and even be thankful that life forced us to slow down.
I am completely aware of the privilege I have to even look at this experience form this perspective. I know thousands, millions, are out there wondering how they will have money for food, rent, and I honestly have no clue what it is like for them at this moment. At the same time, I see how many are complaining and ignoring the advice and directives to social distance ourselves. I see a complete disregard for the lives of others because of the desire to continue to live one’s life the way they feel like they are entitled. I see people taking their privilege and throwing it in the face of others.
I think it is critical for those of us with such privilege to stop and instead of focusing on what we are loosing, focus on what gifts life might be trying to give us in these moments. We are always talking about needing more time and for once that might be what we are being given. More time with those we love, more time to stop and listen, more time to breathe, more time to connect with our innermost self.
And maybe this is why we are complaining. We have forgotten what it is like to pause in life. Living in the in-between moments of life can be confusing and uncertain, but it is in these moments where we really find the best of what life has to offer. So I hope as I go into days, weeks, months of uncertainty, I hope I can continue to have the courage to lean into the unknown instead of reverting back to longing for a time of business. I hope I can continue to see this time as a gift instead of a curse and be thankful for each day that ends with time on the couch next to a puppy listening to music with my husband as our son is asleep upstairs… because if this is not the goodness of life, I don’t know what is.