What’s coming up for me right now?
I love that I’m feeling better. It’s incredible for me to see how good I can feel and how bad chemo really was. When I was in it, I just made the best of it. Now that I’m out of it, I’m looking at each day as an opportunity to live whatever that means for me in the moment.
My whole life I’ve been trying to get somewhere. First it was getting to school. “Whew I made it.” Then getting to the next class, and the next one and the next one. Then achieving dancing marks for knowing Cecchetti method, a very formalized ballet discipline where I learned all the French for every move, could dance the move and know how it fit within the structure of a dance class. I needed the order of that discipline in my life at the time, but where’s the fun in that?
Then, it was making it to college. In one half of my family, women did not traditionally go to a four-year university. On the other, women went, but close to home. I was rushing towards getting out of the south, getting into college and getting out of my little town. Once I was there, it was all about the next class, the next party and then getting out of there for something else. I could go one.
The point I’m trying to make is that for my whole life, I’ve been trying to get somewhere all the time every day. For what? Why? I’m totally missing out on what I feel life may really be about… recognizing and enjoying right now. I know, I know, I’ve heard it many times… “Be in the moment” “The future is now” and “This too shall pass.” It’s an Instagram quote of the day. But now, I am really starting to get it.
This morning, I did not have to take my daughter to school. (Her school is 25 minutes away until we move to our new home.) For some reason, this morning that also meant I did not have to get her ready. My husband did that. (Thank you, David!) I laid in bed a little longer talking to him. I took my time in the shower rinsing off the radiation of the previous day. Even did a grounding exercise in the shower that one of my healers taught me. As I finished taping up my fingers, a left-over consequence of the chemo, I did a little dance with my daughter. I wasn’t rushed. I was not hurried. I recognized my breathing for my lymphatic drainage. I felt alive. I feel alive. And even though I have a list of things a mile long to take care of for myself, my family and my current client, I said to myself, “Write.” So here I am doing that and feeling better than ever because I did.
I know you’ve heard this one, “Life’s not a destination, but a journey.” I feel like slapping the person that says this to me, and yet, it’s so true. My hostility is driven by the fact I know it’s true and yet most my life, I have not been living that way. But now after the chemo, I can see the joy I feel just being with my daughter in the moment. The reason I can really see that is because I have seriously considered and pondered what it would be like to not have that moment, to be dead. Having cancer has done that for me. It’s one of the biggest gifts.
One of the reasons we moved back to North Carolina was to “Bring it down” as my friend Johnny would say. When we were packing up to leave the San Francisco bay area he reminded me over and over, “This is your chance to bring it down.” I guess I sort of believed him and thought I knew what he meant. Looking back, I was clueless. However now out of chemo with my new-found energy, I want to get going people. I’m ready to head into the wind. But for what? Why? I think I’m starting to get it now. That hurried energy I feel; the shallow breath, the fast talking, the dashing, I don’t want that anymore. And if I’m really frank with myself, I can’t have that anymore. It will kill me.
I can have destinations… a new business, a trip with family, a retreat for me… but I don’t have to rush and feel like that IS my life. Right now, writing on this page is my life. Then, being at radiation is my life. And tonight, I’ll stop and read to my daughter. That’s one of the sweetest things about my life.
I guess what I’m trying to say is, why are we all in such a hurry? Where are we trying to go? Do you like me need to look for ways as Johnny says, “To bring it down?” I’m looking.