Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Life is Precious: A Humbling Experience

We often take for granted the relationships and privileges of our lives.  We often fail to see how precious life is.  And I, being as human as anyone else, has taken for granted the precious reality that is before me.  Yet, I was reminded this past week how this temporal existence can end abruptly at any time.

For the last 18 months I have shared my life with someone very dear to my heart.  For the last 5 months we have invested a tremendous amount of time, energy, and love into each other as we make our apartment together our home.  This woman is my teammate, my lover, and my best friend.  Yet, I was reminded last week just how precious this relationship really is.

We were at a concert last Friday night In San Francisco.  The atmosphere was fun, the people were spirited, and the music was great.  As my girlfriend stood beside me I realized how far we have come.  I thought to myself, wow, we have been through so much, we have helped each other grow so much, and here we are in what seemed to be the celebration of creating a home on the west coast.  Then about 30 minuets into the show I heard a scary thud just to my right.  My girlfriend had collapsed and lay on the floor unconscious with here eyes open.  She had fainted and as soon as she regained consciousness I got her to a quite spot and got her some water.  We went home shortly there after, but the image of her lying on the floor, unconscious, has stayed with me since that evening.

Thankfully she is fine now.  Yet, her fainting episode had me realizing something about life that I typically skim over.  I started to ask to myself a few humbling questions.  What if she had passed away?  What if she no longer was there for me love her?  What if we could no longer laugh together?  What if she no longer was to lay next to me at night?  These thoughts distributed me terribly.  But what these thoughts also did was make me realize how grateful I am to have her in my life.

Days can go on and on without much change, but sooner or later everything that we have come to love will leave us.  In light of this fact we should choose to be aware that every moment, every day, and every experience we share with those whom we love is a gift.  In this realization we humbly realize how much we love our significant others, our families, and our friends.

As sobering as that thought can be it is important to realize this.  The fact that life is a temporary experience boldly hints to us to be humble and to not take for granted our blessed friendships, romances, families, and experiences.

For those of you who have lost someone very close to you and you morn their loss, remember, they still live on with you.  Morn them as you feel you should and realize that their love for you is what made you believe in yourself.  This is why you feel them in your heart.  Your acknowledgement of their temporary existence [as well as your own] is what enables you to not take for granted this precious life and to sincerely enjoy what it is that is around you.  This is a sense of deep gratefulness.

Gratefulness, as it seems, is the only key to true happiness.  Sometimes happiness is light, sometimes it is bittersweet, sometimes it is all about laughter, but true happiness comes about only from accepting the humbling realization that all moments and relationships are temporary.  But remember this feeling of gratefulness is not a thought.  It is a feeling you grow into.  We may hurt like hell before we feel this bittersweet peace, but we eventually move that way.  And when we do, when our emotional storms clear, we will feel a greater resonance with creation itself.  Death humbly teaches us how to be grateful for those who came into our lives as well as those who are currently in our lives.

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