Today I went to visit friends who live in the small town where I grew up. Their home is maybe 1/2 mile up hill from where we lived. We were playing around with paint chips and colors for their beautiful home. It was fun. Upon leaving, and driving downhill towards my families old house, I went back in time to childhood when we used to race down that hill with our bikes.
One day my mother’s friend brought up these ugly red sneakers. Hey, converse was where it was at, who wanted ugly red plain sneakers? She said to my sister Darlene and I “You two are going to have to fight over these”…. Well we did… “You can have them!” “No you can have them!” To our dismay our parents told us that when those sneakers were worn out, they would consider buying converse. Well, yankee ingenuity, brains and a strong desire to get rid of those red sneakers but fast, we rode our bikes up this same hill, and on the way down we dragged our toes, so that the front was worn out. My mother was upset when she saw it, and my dad laughed hysterically. But… we got the converse sneakers!
As I passed the home my parents built, I went back in time. I don’t mean to be negative, but it hit me again, Darlene and Karen have both died. My heart sank. I then remembered advice from my therapist who said “We aren’t going to look back… your eyes are in the front of your head for a reason…no looking back”. But that is hard to do when a chunk of your heart is missing. Still, I was able to laugh out loud at our manipulating those ugly red sneakers out of our life. The white rubber soles almost burned as we went so fast and so did the rubber and cloth!
I am blessed with so many good people in my life. When I was growing up my mom would say “If you have one true friend in the world, you have it all”. Well, I feel blessed with so many wonderful friends and people in my life. I am so fortunate. When I start the negative self talk about being a failure, I think about all the good hearted, generous and loving people in my life and I realize, I must be doing something right! I want to believe it is because I have been a good friend, also, and the manner in which I have lived my life, who I am, has reaped wonderful people in my life.
I thank you all for being so supportive of me, not just through cancer, but also the past six months of clinical severe depression. I feel like everyday (well almost) I am gaining strength. I have turned my life over to the care of God, I had to. I could no longer make sound decisions, I could not trust my own thinking. Thank God I was blessed with people who had my best interest at heart. I can honestly say, I do, for the most part, have others best interest at heart.
This mornings sermon was about forgiveness. I forgive easily (again, for the most part), because it sets me free of the anguish, from the prison that captures my happiness and throws it in the sewer. It’s much easier to do this when I don’t look back. The person I have the hardest time forgiving is, indeed, myself.
With balance being the art of life, it’s hard NOT to look back, and there are certainly advantages of doing so, such as learning from past experience. I am doing the best I can to have my feet grounded into today, this very moment, and look forward to, but not live in the future. The past cannot be changed, but my thinking and choices to find balance, peace and serenity in my life can be!