Cancer

You Should Live Like You Are Dying

The other day I was on my way to a meeting, listening to the radio and thinking about what I wanted to say during the conference. Then a song came on the radio that caused me to contemplate a few things.

The artist sang out the following words, “Make sure you live like you’re dying.” Everything I was thinking about changed the moment I heard those words.

It made me think.

It made me pause.

The meeting didn’t seem very important anymore.

Do you live like you're dying?

Do you live like you’re dying?

What would I do if I was, God forbid, dying? Would I live differently? What would I change? Maybe I would pack my bags and run away to Europe. Perhaps, I would care less about keeping my house clean? Would I share unspoken words to my loved ones?

Even for me, a breast cancer survivor, I don’t think about death and dying.

I focus on living.

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When I first got diagnosed, and we didn’t know what we were dealing with, I had a lot of scary thoughts. How could I not? Those first days were some of my hardest. I had been told the pathology of my biopsy indicated that I did have breast cancer, but I didn’t know if it had spread. I didn’t know if it was contained or if it was in other places throughout my body.

I didn’t know what I was facing or what it meant.

It was a scary time.

I thought about how much I wanted to live, especially for my family, and I spent a lot of time crying. Fortunately, I was very blessed and tests later indicated I had found my cancer early. I did ask those hard, “what if questions,” that most of us don’t think about. Most people don’t think about death unless something happens in their lives that causes them to go there.

Who wants to think about death? It’s not a particularly fun topic to ponder. If I hadn’t been diagnosed, I wouldn’t have even thought about the possibility of dying. I was 42. I was young. I had so many things I wanted to do with my life.

 

Hearing the song on the radio, on the way to my meeting, reminded me of the importance of seizing the day. Of grabbing life by the collar, with both hands, and living fully and abundantly well.

It was a good reminder to me, and I hope to you.

It’s easy to put off doing things today because we assume we can do them tomorrow. But, don’t wait. Don’t put off doing something you really want to do just because you expect to have time in the future.

You aren’t guaranteed to have time.

Want a new job? Career? Hobby? Relationship? Start thinking about a way to make it happen now. Are you holding back on your feelings? Don’t presume you’ll have time in the future to tell the people you love how you feel, tell them now. Today.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t plan for your future. Of course, you need to make responsible decisions and think about what you want your future to look like. However, consider this a friendly reminder to seize the day.

Make sure you’re living your best life and spending your time on things that feed your soul. Just because you expect to have a lot more tomorrows, doesn’t mean you should waste your today.

Find meaning each day,

Dara

Enjoy my recent Huffington Post article, What If Your Daughter Couldn’t Play Because She’s A Girl

Check out this months post on my column, Crazy Perfect Life, in Forsyth Woman Magazine, Finding Simple Pleasures In Ordinary Life