In the past few weeks there have been so many incidents which have made me thankful that I am able to live in the moment.
I went to a concert. I sat there and experienced the concert through my own eyes. I didn’t filter the concert through a camera or phone. I didn’t post it to Facebook or tweet it, I didn’t need to send a snap chat to my friends about how awesome the concert was. I didn’t need the photographs or video to keep that memory in my head. In fact, because I was trying to keep it by memory alone, it made me even more in tune with everything going on in that moment. The way I felt, the heat of the evening, the warmth of Matt’s arm touching mine gently, the sound of the music, the words, the poetry of all of it. So wonderful. I remember each and every moment of it despite the fact that I have nothing posted on social media, no photos, no videos. I lived in the moment and so I will never forget those moments. Those moments when I thought to myself “I’m getting so old that I’m the person sitting at the concert instead of down in the madness of the crowd losing my hearing (because I’m old enough to treasure my hearing despite how good the band is).” The moment when I looked beside me and saw a smile on Matt’s face. The moment a memory about a song came back and I could remember the very first time I heard the song. Because I wasn’t filtering my life through a cell phone then either.
I always try to live in the moment and enjoy each and every thing that happens to me whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing. It’s been raining a lot here. The rivers are flooding, and people are starting to get scared. But not me. I’m thankful for the rain and tonight I spent about 20 minutes just standing in it and getting soaked because frankly, I didn’t think I’d ever make it to today. There were so many times in my past when I thought “This is it, I am not going to be able to make it to 30.” Life is freaking TOUGH, and it takes a warrior to make it through sometimes. There were moments where I definitely looked at the situation at hand and thought “I can’t do this anymore. I give up. I don’t want to wake up tomorrow.” But inevitably I did wake up, and I was grateful for that. No, I haven’t always had wonderful and perfect moments, but they are my moments, and no one can ever take them away from me.
Tonight I learned just how precious each moment of life is. I learned that one of my former students has died after his long battle with lung cancer. I had this kid in my class when he was 1, and now he was nearly 12, just wanting what every other nearly 12 year old kid wants. He wanted to play Xbox and be a kid, but instead he had cancer by some weird fluke. This was one spunky little mischief maker and I loved that little snot so much when I was caring for him and I’d often wondered afterwards what happened to him. And the most inspirational part of it all is that I read a blog from his mom, and instead of being angry, sad or frustrated with losing her child, she had nothing but love, gratitude and peace in her words… because she had also lived in the moment, and she had enjoyed and valued each and every breath her son had taken, especially since his diagnosis. And in the end she was able to end her time with him with a truly beautiful moment. Maybe not exactly as she had imagine it would be to part ways with him, but she ended their time together with love and with gratitude that she had lived every moment she could with her child.
I know that not every day will be perfect, but I also know that it’s a waste to live life being sad about what could or should happen in life. I know that wasting time complaining about life not being fair is spitting in the face of all the glorious gifts I’ve been given. So instead of writing about how unfair it was to lose a nearly 12 year old boy from this world, I want to express how grateful I am for each and every shining moment I was able to be in that boy’s life. His smile could light up a room. Boy was he adorable as a toddler, and he was a handsome young man as well. I know that his mom taught him all the wonderful things in life that she could, and I am so grateful to be a part of something so wonderful. I lived every moment I spent with that little boy, and no one can ever take those moments away from me. They were precious moments.
And for his sake, I will continue to live in each and every moment I have because life should not be lived through a lens, but remembered as a series of moments, each more precious than the last.