I haven’t typed anything in almost a month. I don’t know why. I haven’t felt especially down about anything. I haven’t been itching to write but just too busy. I have no good reason and no real understanding, which is hard for me. I like to get what’s going on in my own head! But, alas, some things aren’t meant to be. In the meantime, while I wonder where my mojo has gone to, I scroll through social media…not even commenting all that often, just scrolling, reading, and wondering…
A few days ago, I was looking through my Facebook newsfeed and stopped to read a post made by an incredible friend of mine who is fighting breast cancer. Sara’s posts usually make me smile…you know that kind of subtle, upward tilt at the corner of your mouth when you feel for someone that you’re inspired by, but don’t really understand the extent of what they’re going through. It’s not pity. It’s not empathy. It’s some combination of awe at how honestly and openly she’s tackling this battle, compassion over the fact that cancer does indeed suck, and relief that it’s not me having to be so strong and wise.
So, anyway, I paused to read her post and found myself having a different reaction. I was annoyed.
Then I felt guilty. Could I be annoyed with someone who’s had a mastectomy, chemo, and soon will be going through radiation?
And, what was I so annoyed about, anyway? Sara simply posted a picture of herself and her daughter with the comment:
Running with this girl always reminds me…. I’m not fighting as if my life depends on it. I’m living as if my life depends on it.
Because in the end, I want my kids (and me) to remember me living through cancer, not fighting through it.
I’m judging myself a little bit right now as I type this up. Sara’s post is another honest, uplifting, inspiring post. She’s parenting, homeschooling, running a business, celebrating birthdays, and savoring life…all the precious moments she can. Before cancer rocked their world, she and her family were empowering with their everyday, normal life. Now…even more so. So, what bothered me about this particular post?
Well, as I started out saying, I haven’t typed a thing in weeks. It’s what I say I love. I’d even started calling myself a writer. I’ve written posts hoping to inspire others to seek the good in the word. I’ve written posts about feeling excited about life’s possibilities. I’ve written a whole bunch of things that were certainly true at the time. But lately…lately I haven’t written anything.
And I don’t know why. And it doesn’t matter.
I was annoyed because I felt convicted by her words.
My reaction said nothing about her. It was all about me. I haven’t been living. I’ve been getting through the days. Nothing monumental has held me back or pushed me down. I just wasn’t caring so much. I’d think about writing and sometimes literally shrug. I’d think about some topic I might want to put some thoughts together about and then figure, “What’s the point?” And then one day, while I’m wondering what’s up with my motivation, I happen upon a post by a friend who doesn’t want to be remembered for fighting through cancer but for living through it.
Annoyance and guilt were followed by shame. So, I thought about it a bit and then decided to dust off the keyboard and write.
Inspiration can come from anywhere. Sometimes it’s subtle. Sometimes it’s what my sister calls “God sticks” that hit us upside the head or in the gut. Sometimes we miss it over and over because we’ve got our faces in social media. Sometimes we might even recognize it and turn our backs on it anyway, mistakenly thinking what we have to say or do isn’t enough. Or maybe those things are just me…
Oh well, either way…I’m going to do my best to get back to this thing I love. I’m going to look for that on the verge feeling I talked about a few months ago. I’m going to write more, journal, do yoga…the things that make me smile and feel good. I’m going to choose growth.
That’s for the wake up call, Sara.
I’m going to choose to live my life.