I didn’t know my grandmother (father’s side) very well. As I child I remember seeing her at family gatherings that usually took place during the holidays. Occasionally, I think we may have stopped by her house; but nothing more. What I do remember about her is that she was sassy and enjoyed having a good time. I don’t remember ever having a “real” conversation with her, you know; about life, love or religion. Most people fear living, but I don’t think my grandmother did.
On the contrary, you might think that people actually fear death because it’s so final. Truth is, we fear death in the moments we haven’t lived. I believe that our loved ones who have crossed over would tell us to live our life, celebrate the small stuff and get off the couch and go have an adventure. To me that’s living. To be a participant in your life and the lives of others. That’s how we receive the gift of life from our creator.
If you’ve lived long enough, you have experienced loss; of loved ones, jobs, material things, etc. It doesn’t get easier, but mostly because we take it personally. It’s hard not to. Loss sucks, but mostly because it makes us take a deep look at ourselves and how we are living our lives. If you lose a job, you automatically think of what you could have done better, or “maybe I should have come into work earlier” and so on. If the loss is of a human life, we tend to think of all the adventures we wish we would have taken with them or how we think we could have told them how we really felt about them and not wasted so much time being judgmental or angry with them.
In retrospect of my own losses, (I’ve had a lot; most recently my grandma) I’ve learned that in order to receive life we must celebrate it. Especially with the people we love and care for the most. The reason death makes us so introspective is because we realize that we are not God, not in control, and only have a limited number of days to be who we really are, on the inside. That’s uncomfortable for some people. To show the world who we are, means we must let go, build bridges instead of walls and for some people, that is terrifying.
If the world knew who you really are, what would they find out? That you are human? Sometimes we are so scared of being judged by other people that we forfeit our own identity to fit into someone else’s version of who they think we should be. I ask you to take my hand and say, who the hell cares! You don’t need to make excuses for you, be yourself. Allow people the opportunity to know you before it’s too late. You are enough, if you want your life to look different, then be the first person in your life to say, “I’m not afraid to live!”
Perhaps to be among the living means that: you will have to take risks; you will need to accept yourself as you are and accept others as they are; you may go on a new adventure; you need to face the fact that your body may not be exactly the way you want it to be; you may not be as athletic as you desire, but YOU are enough! You are the exact person that someone else is waiting to receive. You are an inspiration to someone, but they will never know if you don’t have the courage to leave the couch and step away from the remote.
So today, when you are around living breathing humans, put down your screens, look them in the eyes and have a real conversation. You could be the person they’ve been waiting for all day.