Saturday, November 26, 2005
An Unwanted Journey: Day 0002 - Too Much Life
Family, friends, and neighbours have been incredibly supportive today. You will notice that I don’t mention names of family members, friends, acquaintances, or colleagues on my web blog. That’s simply because I want to respect their privacy, not because I don’t appreciate their significance in my life.
But from the moment I got up this morning, it seemed like someone had a hug, called on the phone, shared comforting experiences, wrote supportive emails, went for a walk with me, or simply asked how I was doing. To put it simply, I felt loved and valued by those around me.
What the conversations, emails, and stories also revealed, though, was what a neighbour perceptively named “too much life”. If you give people an opportunity to share in your own story of life’s twists and turns, you will discover just how many others are either currently involved in their own difficulties or have endured traumas that put your own into context. “Too much life” is just one way of saying that sometimes life deals us hands that we would not have chosen on our own or even guessed could happen. But when we share with one another, we realize that our own little circle of concern is part of a far larger canvas of intersecting circles of concern. In those areas of overlap, we can comfort one another and learn from one another.
In most cases, all we have to do is ask. Today was just one such example of how asking and giving are reciprocal and mutually beneficial.
Still, the rollercoaster continues. Several times during the day, I found myself shifting from sorrow to hope and then back again to uncertainty. Christmas carols put me over the edge, but then my wife and sons and I would recall something that would end up with us all howling with laughter.
I love them deeply. I love the way they respect me and yet demand my best. I love the way they are coping with their own sense of loss and uncertainty. I feel blessed.