Do you have to be sick to live? I mean really live, not just stumble through your day like a zombie glued to your mobile device or race around in a blur like a mad person, but really, truly live.
Spending your days fully engaged in your life, every moment a revelation or an opportunity to do something new; fiercely loving your family, your friends, strangers and even yourself. Holding on so tight and never losing sight of the sheer dumb luck that landed your ass on this rock in the middle of a cold dark void.
Can you only appreciate these things when life grabs you by the neck and throws you against the wall and seems to say, “You better look around and decide what’s really important because the clock is a-ticking.”
Then you think about all the things you haven’t done and the things you haven’t said. You get scared, then mad, then incredibly pissed off and then sad again before your determination sets in. Maybe you would experience those emotions in a different order, or maybe experience different ones all together, but the idea is the same. The end result is the same. You are determined to live fully, love like you never have before and let nothing stand in your way.
The resolve to fight tooth and nail for every precious moment you can possibly spend with your loved ones. You promise to spend more quality time petting your cats and walking your dog. Even cleaning the toilet is cause for celebration because you are still capable of doing it and you don’t know how many more times in your life you will be hunched over the bowl scrubbing around and around.
Of course your number could be up any day, driving or crossing the street, choking on your morning breakfast, etc. We all know this, but it doesn’t carry the same weight as when there is an imminent threat with an actual name and a frightening survival rate. Why do we need that sense of urgency? Every day is a race to the end, a chance to change and full of moments to savor.
I always wondered how the chronically sick kept such good spirits, at times I suspected it gave them some kind of satisfaction to be happy, brave and positive; holding it over the heads of the healthy but miserable. Now I have an idea how they can be thankful and joyful for every minute, even the painful ones.
But the question remains, “do you have to be sick to live?”
I hope not.