Throughout my fourteen month journey of being primary caregiver to my dying mom and even now through the last five months of grief/mourning, I have not (yet) asked the question “why?”
When someone you love dies – especially when you were so closely and deeply connected throughout the whole process, it is natural to ask questions like “why me?”, “Why did he/she have to die?”, or “Why now?” I have not questioned what I previously believed about life and death and even about God.
What I would like and know that I can never get again, is my old life with mom – sharing jokes, going for coffee, the arguments, the difference of opinion, sharing the box of chocolates or slab of chocolate, going for a scenic drive, learning new things together, sitting at the beach eating ice cream . . .
Bereavement and mourning is a universal and integral part of our experience of love. Someone once said:
“Tears are how our heart speaks when our lips cannot describe how much we have been hurt.”
The question I have been asking up to now has been “What is the meaning of life? What really matters?”
The answer that I have come up with is that I want more of a life/work balance. I want to work smarter and not harder. I don’t want to be rich, I just want to live comfortably, able to enjoy what life I have left on this mortal earth. Watching my mom on her journey to eternity made me realise that all that matters is having your loved ones around to support you through your journey – something money cannot buy.
The last nineteen months has therefore taken me on a journey to discover “who am I really and what exactly do I want out of life?” The answer for me has been that I don’t want to be stuck behind a desk for eight or nine hours per day. I want to earn an honest living to survive but I also want time to enjoy moments sitting on the beach or in the park watching children play.
While preparing to write this blog I came across the writings of David Whyte on How to Break the Tyranny of Work/Life: Three marriages work/life balance he mentions the following quote:
“We are each a river with a particular abiding character, but we show totally different aspects of our self according to the territory through which we travel”
I also came across the following quote by Dave Hedges asking the question: What is life really about? And the quote goes like this . . .
“Life’s not about the things you’ve bought, it’s about the things you’ve built.
Life’s not about what you’ve got, it’s about what you’ve shared with others.
Life’s not about your successes, it’s about the lessons learned along the way.”
What lessons have you learned along this “Journey called life”?
• The Three Marriages Reimagining Work, Self and Relationship Find it here
• How we grow by John Emmerson: Find it here
• Glorious Meditation on Solitude: Find it here
• The Importance of Excess in Creative Work by Anais Nin: Find it here
• Letting your life Speak by Parker Palmer: Find it here
• Floundering to find his purpose: Van Gogh: Find it here