Early this morning was the start of yet another trip to Rochester, Minnesota. Today was different than all of the other visits. Instead of taking one family member to the great clinic of the north as all of the previous trips have been, there were two close family members with us today. Appointments were scheduled close, yet staggered enough that we were able to complete everything and much more.
I am fortunate that I have my health. I am blessed that even though we know not where our journeys will end, precious time is being shared with those fighting good fights.
Having been a supporter in battles that for one is measured at 4-years and for another at just a little over a year, I have learned and grown. I would never wish this on another person, but there have been positive aspects of these situations. While this effort is not about me, the personal awareness I will describe is about me.
- What is Important – I have learned that the little things in life matter as much or more than the “big events” that money buys. Yes, I remember great trips to amusement parks and other travels. All were fun, but through these more personal ordeals I have learned that quiet time sharing emotions and memories means far more than short-term pleasures. Don’t get me wrong, big trips are memorable. But seeing tears in eyes as a stranger pays it forward and buys your breakfast, or conversations with others fighting similar battles who have won or their young niece has recovered are just as special.
- Money Can’t Buy Everything – As we move about between various appointments and clinics, we share hallways with people who might be down on their luck or affluent beyond imagination. Regardless of wealth or lack of, we are all equal when it comes to our health. Yes, some are blessed with lifelong good health and many are not. However, regardless of our wealth we cannot buy complete health. All are vulnerable, all have some control. The playing field is equal, regardless of bank accounts. Appreciate your good health, treat your body with respect, and cherish each day.
- We Control Very Little – When you face a grim diagnosis, in our case two, and you recognize that no matter what you do you cannot change history, the current, and maybe not the future relative to the illness. You learn that the only thing you can control is your reaction to your situation. Be negative or expect negative and you will reap what you sow. Be positive or expect positive and your chances of a much better experience – even if it ends contrary to what you wanted – are yours to appreciate. We have very little control over outside circumstances. We have absolute control over our reactions.
- Demonstrate My Faith – When you do not know from one hour to the next what is coming your way, when the current situation is a fog, you learn to demonstrate your faith. It is one thing to say “I am trusting.” It is another to actually trust that no matter what happens, you are not alone as you wander down paths unknown.
In no way am I saying I am perfect in demonstrating my faith – I am not. I will say I am much improved in my demonstrations of faith. I need to focus on my gratitude attitude and I do need to trust more, but I am far better at it than I used to be.
This image was recorded this morning as our path became foggy en route to Rochester. I could have panicked or feared today would not be pleasant. Instead I paused to enjoy the beauty and then worked through the various challenges faced with people very important to me.