My son graduated from high school last night. And, by God’s grace, I was there to witness it!
Being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness changes your perspective in so many ways. At first, the future is so cloudy you can’t see more than a few days into it ~ just until the next medical test or dreaded phone call. You wonder if you’ll even be here to enjoy the fall fair, celebrate Christmas, or welcome the new life of spring. You fear that the milestones most people get to experience will never be reality for you.
But then you realize that no one is guaranteed tomorrow ~ or even the next minute. You begin to treasure the moments ~ even things that might have caused irritation before ~ because you are just thankful to be here. You begin to hope ~ not expect ~ that you’ll have the opportunity to do those things you’ve dreamed of. Life and relationships and time become oh-so-precious.
The tricky part comes when life moves back toward normal ~ even if it’s a new normal. You settle into a routine, start to anticipate what each day will look like, and feel upset when things don’t go the way you’d planned. You chafe at frustrations and chide yourself for what hasn’t gotten done. Until someone reminds you: “The important thing is that you’re here. Just be.”
Last night’s graduation did that for me. It was a reminder to be “in the moment” ~ in the midst of the rush and the stress of preparation, to take a deep breath, look around me with wonder, and think, “I’m here! I could have missed this, but God let me live.”
Let’s not take a moment that we are given for granted. Each breath, each experience with a loved one, is a gift!