I’ve been doing quite a few speaking engagements. I laugh about the fact that most people when they speak get to talk about empowerment issues, i.e. making money, getting ahead in life, rah-rah motivational issues. Me? I get the really fun stuff – death, and loss.
People think that talking about these subject matters must be hard for me. Well…
I get moved, I remember, I cry. Every time.
It’s gotten to where I warn my audience that I’m a true “cry baby,” and to not worry when it looks like I’m going to sail over the edge of decorum. And mostly, I teeter at the precipice, but always manage to take a breath and pull back.
I also sometimes cry before I speak. And sometimes I cry after, and/or spend a couple “down” days recovering.
And yes, for some time I wondered why I was crazy enough to do it. I mean, why not get away from such a sad subject and its accompanying memories? What am I putting myself through this for?
But I want to remember.
And as painful as it can be, it reminds me, once again, of what’s really important in life. To not squander the gift of life that we’ve been given. To give our love freely to those that we care about.
An “I love you,” a kind word, or a kiss is never wasted.
And whereas I always denied myself pleasures in the past, I know now to not fritter away my time working so hard that I rarely lift my nose from my self-imposed grindstone. If I’m not going to do the things that lift my heart in life today, then when am I going to do it?
If not now, when?
I may not be here tomorrow, and my loved ones may not. Wait a second, it’s not that we “may not” be here. In truth, it’s a 100% chance that we won’t. 100% So, why wait?
And as I’ve said, before and after my beautiful husband’s terminal illness – there’s no time like the present to do what you want to do, and be who you want to be.
So, although speaking at events about loss, connecting with others who are going through their own terrible suffering, I’ll shed tears and my heart will ache, but I will be reminded of the gifts Patrick and I received during his illness, and the invaluable lessons that I’ve learned from him, and still keep learning.
And of course, in addition to these meaningful reminders, there is truly a “high” that comes from helping others. I may pay an emotional debt for doing it, but if I help someone else, it vastly lowers the price, making it worth it.
Hey! I guess I do speak about empowerment after all. And mine is about living your life – from the inside out. Connecting to life in the deepest, most fulfilling way that you can. It’s there, every moment of every day.
Why take the long winding path to your truth? Just cut right through to the heart of what matters. The sooner, is always – the better. And “now” is always – the perfect time.
Have a great day!