Sunday, April 02, 2006

Carpe Diem

I have to do something today that I really hate-I'm going to visitation for a friend who died this weekend. We weren't the closest of friends, but I have known her and her family for many years. She was friendly and talkative, always asking about me, my kids, and my family. Her death was sudden. I can't imagine what her husband and children, family and closest friends, must be experiencing at this moment. I can only pray that time will eventually heal their broken hearts.

Thoughts about this sad situation have plagued me all day. I've alternated between the desire to cry and smothering my husband and children with hugs. Just feeling them close to my heart reminds me that I'm still with them.

But in the midst of this sadness came an inspiring thought: I'm not wasting what time I have here on earth. I'm trying to be the best mother and wife and friend that I can be. I'm striving to be the best version of me that I can. And I'm reaching for my dream.

Every day, I take one more step away from my comfortable life into the unknown. I reach for my dream, my dream of publishing a book. To others, this may seem insignificant. But that's okay. It isn't their dream. Other writers and my family understand. I understand. That's all that matters. A hundred years from now, no one may know my name. I'm not going to write the GREAT AMERICAN NOVEL, just a romance that will bring encouragement and hope to the women and men who read it. But my pursuit of this dream, and hopefully the fulfillment of it, is teaching me something that will change my spirit throughout all eternity. Those lessons will go with me beyond this life, knowledge of persistence, precision, expressing myself, not giving in to defeat, and celebrating victories big and small.

What does this have to do with...anything? Life ends in the blink of an eye. Don't waste the time you have living in the comfortable world of the familiar. Stretch yourself, pursue your dream. Find the gift God gave you-the one that makes Him smile-and use it. Even if you are never published, the work wasn't in vain. For it is a part of you, a part that will endure.

Carpe Diem. How will you seize the day?



Rhonda said...

Beautiful post, Angel. Thank you for sharing.

Playground Monitor said...

Sometimes it takes something like this to make us realize we need to stop and smell the roses.

I have to call my son today but I'm going to make sure I tell him just how much I love him and how proud I am of him.

So sorry to hear about your friend. May God's love lift them up in this trying time.


Smarty Pants said...

My co-workers mother died last week - less than a month after she was diagnosed with cancer. She was only 58. Just like that - stomach pain, cancer, stroke, dead.

When people die that quickly or unexpectedly, it always makes me nervous. In a blink someone can be snatched away.

I went to her visitation Thursday but couldn't make myself attend the funeral. Where I come from, only family and close friends go go funerals. Instead, I spent Sunday with my family. My grandmother is moving to Florida next week so we had Easter early. After dinner, my mom, grandma, little sister, and I sat in the kitchen talking and laughing about nothing important.

That's how I seized my day.

Kathy said...

'Death is not the is only the beginning.' Those are confirming words from literature, the movie The Mummy, and have become a mantra in our hearts.

Getting bogged down in the daily grind and continuing to stay focused on what's important is the hardest thing of all. Too often we neglect to give importance to simple things, to give credence to our efforts, successes and losses.

Your feelings are normal, Angel. Let them flow like a waterfall with no recourse other than to spill into the sea. As writers we are like waterfalls. We have no choice but to write words that spill from our hearts and minds. Words, like water, cannot be dammed. Words can be influenced by hatred and love, and guided by study and experience. They lead us, chart our journey, and eventually log our passing but we cannot deny them just as we cannot change our fates.

Your blog has humbled me this morning because I realize how blinded I've become to the simple things. Thanks for waking me up, Angel.

May God bless your friend's family.

Problem Child said...

Beautiful post, Angel.

And you know as well as I do that the "Great American Novel" is highly overrated.

I'll take a novel that makes me smile and laugh and feel good about myself any day.

Hug your kids.


Instigator said...

Sometimes it takes something drastic to make us appreciate the gifts in our life. It reminds us not to be complacent or take what we love for granted. This is the silver lining in any tragedy, sometimes difficult to see but always there. I'm sorry to hear about your friend, Angel.

How did I sieze the day? I spent this weekend alternating between editing my little heart out and spending time with my family. Sweet Pea is trying to learn a cartwheel. They put her a class ahead in gymnastics because it was the only time we could get there. She's the only one in class who can't do one yet. I'm really proud of how hard she's working to get this. She must have spent hours this weekend flipping her feet over her head. But what I'm most proud of is the joy she has tackling the task.
Oh, and the fact that at four she understands what a deadline is and waited patiently for me to help her :-)


Linda Winstead Jones said...

Beautiful, and so true!

Every day truly is is precious.