Time is all we have. Once the diagnosis begins there is often a race against time. The first is getting all the appointments in so we can find out the diagnosis, treatment plan and the endless specialists we’re going to have to see. Depending on your illness the race may be against time. It’s not something we ever want to discuss but not everyone who gets sick will live so what is it about today that’s going to be different from every other day.
Before I entered the helping professions I began my adult work life in the hotel industry. The general manager explained to me that the selling of a room in a hotel is a perishable commodity. That meant if we didn’t sell room 101 on April 11, 2008, we couldn’t ever sell it for that night again. Don’t you feel the same is true with the lives we lead?
Once we live this day we can’t say, “Oops I didn’t do it right, may I have a do over?” That kind of thinking only works in the movie Ground Hog’s Day. It’s interesting because most people wouldn’t want the chance to live their days over so how can we make the most of what we have today. Trust me, I understand that lying in bed in pain may not be a day to go out dancing, but what can you do to make the most of the day?
Is there a poem that brings you joy? I have found the work by poet Mary Oliver to be thoughtful, endearing and full of meaning about life. Maybe you have a piece of music that helps ease the tension or pain. If you’ve read The Mozart Effect you’ll find that music has amazing healing powers and it doesn’t take any effort to listen (unless you have migraines and the thought of sound is worse than torture).
How we live the day is our choice. Yes, we will often have to make concessions, but it’s part of the creative nature of those battling an illness. Today is a perishable commodity and the shelf life ends at midnight. What will you do before the day expires?