Monday, October 19, 2009

Wishing Away Time

I have a quote hanging on the wall at my desk at work that says, “If we fill our hours with regrets of yesterday and worries of tomorrow, we have no today in which to be thankful.” I know exactly where I got the quote but have no idea who said it. Unfortunately, the person that quoted it to me doesn’t know either. I wish I knew so that I could give them credit. It’s quite wise.

Lamenting about things that are past is a complete waste of time. There’s nothing we can do to change it. That time has come and gone. If I had it to do over, there are MANY things I would have never said or done. But, I don’t dwell on them because I can’t change them. Besides, I have asked forgiveness for them already and most likely everyone but me has forgotten them. If you haven’t and I was wrong…please forgive me. Feel free to call and we’ll discuss it. I am ready to admit my mistake if you just remind me…

Worrying about tomorrow or next week…Well, we all do that from time to time. Some more than others. I used to be worried about EVERYTHING. I saw another quote once that said, “Worry works because most of the things I worry about never happen.” I used to think that was funny and worth quoting. Really?? It really just shines a light on how futile worry is in the first place. We know we aren’t supposed to worry. Yet, we do. Most recently, I was worried about losing my hair for so long that I sounded like a broken record. And look how that turned out! Not a big deal at all.

Friday I had my second round of chemo. It appears to have gone well. I wasn’t sick this time either. I felt a little queasy today at work, but nothing that the medicine couldn’t manage. I am feeling the effects more than the last time. It seems stronger because it's starting that cumulative effect they warned me about. I guess I could be worried about that, but I haven’t been. If this cancer has taught me anything (and boy has it!) it’s that I am not in control of things. What a relief! I was sick of feeling in charge anyway. It’s a shame to admit, but for me it took cancer to understand surrender. What a slow learner! Still, I am so thankful for the lesson.

So, let’s check the list: No regrets and dwelling on the past. Check! No worrying about tomorrow. Check! That leaves today. Thankful for that…check! Or am I? I hate to admit it, but I realized today that I usually am not. Not really, anyway. You see, I’m tired. Chemo makes you tired. Of course if you’d ask me before I got cancer, I would have told you the same thing. I was tired then. It’s all just degrees of the tiredness. But I found myself thinking, “I wish today was over so that I could go home and lie down.” How many times have I thought that? Have you?

I hate to admit it, but even in my mode that I thought was “thankful” I haven’t been. I have spent a good deal of those days wishing away time. “If I can just get through this day, then I can go home and rest.” Someone asked me on the elevator this morning, “Is it Friday yet?" It’s Monday! You have to wish away five FULL days to get to Friday on Monday morning! How crazy is that? The truth is that we aren’t guaranteed anything but this moment. For some, this will be the last one here on earth. Even if that’s not the case, we can wish away years of time with nothing to show for it if we aren’t careful. Just passing time, making no impact, getting by…

Yesterday I got to spend the day with my dear friend, Meghan, from many years ago. One of the things that I just couldn’t believe as we talked was how much time had passed since we’ve seen each other. Her son will graduate high school this year and she didn’t have a son the last time we saw each other. How many of those days did I wish away? I look at Brayden and see him growing up so fast and know that it will be his turn to graduate before I know it. I just can’t wish those days away.

So, that brings me back to chemo. I’ve got two down and four to go. How can I not wish it would hurry up and be over? January 8th is circled on the calendar for sure! It’s the last one. But in the meantime, how many moments, memories, and days could I wish away just wishing it was over. What would I miss? I want to miss NOTHING. So, I have to learn to be still in my situation. Enjoy the good times while this is going on. There’s so much more going on than chemo. How can I sum it all up in that? I can’t. So instead of making this time something else I “check off the list”, I’m going to accept it as just one thing happening in my “today”, a today that I am choosing to be thankful for.


kitykity said...

A wonderful, wonderful post. I need to practice this too--to "be still," which is exactly what I was praying about the other day--to enjoy this very day, this very moment, and not worry about the ones ahead or behind. I'm sitting here, wrapping up my evening laptop time, with one kid sleeping on either side of me, because they didn't want to sleep in their rooms... again. But you know what? There's nowhere else in the world I'd rather be. Hugs...

Shauni L. said...

You don't know me but I met a friend of yours today! I think her name is Laura. She cut my hair up here in Ellensburg, WA! She had such good things to say about you and I was intrigued when she told me you have a blog about your fight with cancer. I am young 22 year old nurse. I work on the oncology unit at a hospital in Olympia, Wa. I want to thank you for doing this blog. Not only can it help us oncology nurses obtain better a understanding of what our patients go through but I know it is going to help alot of cancer diagnosed people make it through the tough times. Your latest blog is so true. I constantly find myself wishing the time away and I get upset with myself quite often over it. Even when the tough times come I would like to find some kind of good in it so I don't just wish the time away. Thankyou for writing!
I actually just started a blog! You can visit it if you would like! It's at


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