Today is, seemingly, just another January day. And, for most, it is just another day. For some, today is a celebration of a birth or a memory of a death. For others it is the day they got engaged or married or divorced. And for others, perhaps it’s the day they passed that test they feared they would fail or they bought a new car or they finally feel healthy after a long illness or they looked deep into the depths of depression and decided that today was the day that they would get out of bed, depression be damned!
For me, today is a day where I look out the window and see this glorious blue sky. It is a day where I can drink this hot drink and feel it warm my esophagus. It is a day I can listen to music and tap my feet. It is a day where I work on projects, support loved ones and clients, serve humanity, and feel really grateful for my Gifts.
Today is a day where I can be witness to my daughter’s beauty, her grace, her wild sense of humor, and her tenacity. I can smell her shampoo and conditioner in her hair, heated by the hot force of her blow dryer. I can watch her lean over the bathroom sink to get really close to the mirror so she can make sure there is no breakfast lingering in her braces. I can glance at her in the dark of the morning drive and see her seat-dancing with her earbuds pumping her soundtrack straight into her head. I can watch her skip across the sidewalk, run up the steps, hold hands with her boyfriend, study her homework, rest her head on the pillow, and simply be. Today, I can reach out and touch her hand or caress her hair. And today, I get many opportunities to hear her laugh and join her in that laughter.
Today is also a day I cry because my best friend no longer has the opportunity to do all of that with her daughter and since January 19, 2013 that has been the case. Today is a day that is fluid, filled with tears that unexpectedly appear on my lashes and spill down my cheeks at the oddest of moments, for the strangest of reasons, and sometimes, even, in the most inconvenient of places.
When we experience death – and, we all will at one point or another in our life because it is the only certainty in life – one thing that happens is it brings into sharp focus the life we are living. Our loved one leaves the earthly realm and we are left here on the planet to ponder what it means to be alive.
Being alive is about more than surviving. It is more than getting from one day to the next. It is more than getting up, going about the mundane, and going back to bed.
Being alive is about living your life, which means to experience it in all its messy glory and dynamic emotional forces. It is about feeling that heartrending grief that you are fairly certain is going to tear you to shreds. It’s about holding that grief sacred and allowing it to flow in whatever way it can move.
It’s about feeling the drop in your gut when you stare face-to-face with whatever monster that has been haunting you. It’s looking at that monster, approaching that monster, and going through that monster to find yourself liberated.
It’s about feeling the clenching of your jaw, the stiffening of your neck, the sudden intensity in your midsection that tells you anger has been ignited. It’s about finding ways of expressing that fire in forward, healthy motion so that it can find release.
It’s about feeling the sparkling, bubbling, effervescent sensations of happiness coursing through your veins. It’s about relishing in these vibrations and growing them and expanding them and sharing them.
Being alive is about feeling.
And, when it gets too be “too much,” it is then that the emotions really need to be expressed because they’re ready, they’re simmering. Release them and find yourself to be fully alive. And, in that process, make note of all the beauty that is around you. Tell your loved ones you love them. Cherish their presence. And drink it in. Because that IS living!
© Angie K. Millgate 01/15/14
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