“Mom just called. My nephew found his 30-year-old wife dead when he came home from work. Apparent heart attack. Life is precious and you never know when it will be taken from you. Live like you are dying.”
That is a recent Facebook update from a friend.
Last week my husband’s co-worker’s wife (in her early 40s, I believe) had a stroke and died shortly after. I was told she was in perfect health. She thought she had a bad headache, went for some Advil and collapsed.
Not long ago, a friend of a friend passed away after falling down a flight of stairs. She was also very young and full of life.
I just read a story today about a Lake County woman who was killed on her bike – on her 34th birthday.
In the past few weeks there have been an unusual number of 30, 40, 50 year-old people in the obits.
Well, this is not a new topic for me. And yes, this is all giving me very heightened anxiety and REALLY fucking with my phobias. But I absolutely need to find a way to harness that fear and turn it into the energy and motivation it will take to improve my life. And by improving my life I mean changing my brain.
It is so easy for us to take tragedy and turn it into a lesson about living life to the fullest and reminding us how short life truly is. But those lessons fade fast as we get caught up in the monotony of our daily dramas and tired lifestyles.
When I think about the time I waste hating my body, looking for something to wear, fighting about money or worrying what other people do and say – I want to barf. There are days when I am brought to tears because of all my lost time, the fast rate at which life is rocketing by and the realization that I am likely closer to my death than I am to my birth.
My daughter has almost all of her adult teeth. My stepdaughter has entered “womanhood”. My tits are practically dragging on the floor. And I am typically in bed before 9pm. I am old. Everyone is getting old. The little girls whose diapers I changed will soon be changing diapers of new babies (well, not TOO soon – KNOCK ON WOOD).
I will never again hold a baby of my own. I will never again have the body of a 25-year-old. I will never bounce back from illnesses, injuries and hangovers the way I used to. The days of random men checking me out are gone. The days of staying up all night are in the past. And I am even too old to try out for American Idol!!
These are the kind of stupid little things I obsess and depress about. These are things that take up my time and my mental energy. These are the thoughts that sap my emotions. And it needs to fucking stop.
I absolutely MUST find a way to be in the present. To be grateful for what I have and who I am. I need to somehow manifest the happiness for which I have always been searching. The fear must stop. The regret must stop. The guilt must stop. Life must begin.