Banking On a Better Future
Are you constantly delaying any feeling of happiness or joy till some future point? When this round of chemo is over, then it will be better. When he get’s home from the hospital, then I’ll be able to relax. If we can just make it through this year, then we can move on with our lives.
If We Can Just Get Through This Year…
I remember the first time my husband was diagnosed with a tumor in his arm. We learned it was cancer and would require lots of chemotherapy and surgery. It was such a difficult time and there was so much to adjust to. Looking back I realize my complete world view was changed that day. Throughout that whole year, we just kept telling ourselves, if we can get through this, then we can move on with our lives. We kept living each day for that better future.
Why Not Live For The Future?
With cancer, the present moment often feels so painful that all we want is to escape it. We comfort ourselves with the false thought that we’ll feel better in the future because our life will be better. Instead, we end up living for a future that may never come. This is not to say that your life circumstances won’t change. For sure they will. Life however has a way of throwing new curve balls our way.
It Doesn’t Get Better Than This
One of the hardest lessons I’ve learned is that my ability for joy and happiness does not rely on anything outside myself. It doesn’t rely on my husband’s recovery any more than it relies on a bigger, better home or new job. This means that my capacity for joy is always with me, regardless of the world around me.
All we ever have in life is the present moment.
This can be so hard to embrace. It’s so tempting to think everything will be so much better when… new car, new job, no cancer, loosing 20 pounds…. This is never true because it is our thoughts that create our emotions – not the stuff in the world, our weight, our child’s successes.
I challenge you to find peace/joy/love/happiness/appreciation in the present moment. Right now, exactly where your life is, decide to embrace it. Go ahead and continue to dream for better things in your future, but don’t base your present happiness on the attainment of those things. That ability is with you right now. Remember, the present moment is all we ever have.