I've been having a debate with myself today since 10am. I've been wondering if it's easier to be brave while living or to be brave while dying. Yes, we are all dying, and yes, we are (especially if you are reading this) all living. But are we living with every good intention? Are we living with honor, and humility, and thankfulness?
If we are dying, and we know we are dying, doing things with kindness, honor, humility and thankfulness might be easier. We are blessed with the knowledge we are dying, and so making those conscience choices to be a better person are put into perspective. We know that helping someone out is worth the effort, even if it means we being generous with our time or our money. It's easier to overlook the snarky comments and glares because we know that we can't waste a moment on not giving grace.
Life is hard.
Living a good life is even harder.
Living while knowing you are dying...that is probably the hardest of all.
This internal debate was brought on by a phone message left by a friend this morning. Her mother passed away this past Friday.
Her mother had been diagnosed with a debilitating and degenerative disease in 2006. Her whole family knew this diagnoses was, for lack of a better word, a death sentence. You can't come back from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. Like being diagnosed with HIV/AIDS, you know your days are numbered.
And my friend's mother has been living her life with kindness, honor, humility and thankfulness. That is bravery. Getting up every morning and feeling a little worse than the day before? I can't imagine what that is like. Getting up every morning feeling a little worse than the day before and looking at that day as a blessing? Gosh. I can only hope to live out my days like that.
And so, dear friend: we love you, and admire your mother. I am inspired by the life your mother led, and believe that many other people are as well.