“First I was raw; then I was cooked; now I am burnt.” Rumi

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Okay, sometimes I get totally thrown. During those times, there is no escape from my mind, from the feeling in my chest. It vacillates between a Shakespearean play and a banal soap opera. I have some control for redirection but the intensity remains unaffected.I sit. When I’m not standing every morning for an hour or riding a motorized stationary bike, I sit.

I sit facing multiple, snowcapped fourteen thousand foot mountains, or fourteeners to the locals. I love where I sit. I would rather be here than anywhere else. I sit and examine my life. It is a sacred task and one for which I feel much gratitude. Who gets to do this? When something from my past feels incomplete, it gets tweaked. If there is something that I haven’t said to someone, I see it and say it. There is a flow with every relationship in my life. I have corrected the imbalance of giving too much; I have learned to receive.

I believe that when we leave this majestic world, like nearly all of the near-death experiences portray, we have a life review. I’m fortunate to begin that self-reflection while still in my body. There is an old Hasidic saying, “on your deathbed, you never say,’ I should have worked more.’” Whether this chair in which I sit is a deathbed or a temporary place of rest, that is merely a matter of semantics.

I have partial use of one hand; that is it. From a competitive swimmer, runner, and horse rider, this is my Sacred Curriculum. I accept this curriculum and all that it involves. Would I rather be riding my horse or snow skiing? Honestly, there are moments I would. Would I rather be flying to New York City to be with my children and grandchildren? Clearly, there are moments, many moments that I would. However, doing this Work is what I am here to do in the present moment. All I have, all we all have, is the present moment.

It is in the present moment where true joy lives. For me, the past brings grief and the future, fear. That is generally true for everyone, whether dealing with a life-threatening illness or not. The present moment is where I try to live. Our bodies join with our spirits to partner with us in this endeavor.

Everybody gets thrown sometimes. It is a sacred practice to metaphorically pick ourselves up, brush ourselves off, and begin again. It is the means to the “end” that grows our soul. It is that perseverance that grows self-love. I believe that this is the essence of why we are here.

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