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Buying Time on an Emotional Budget

When it comes to cancer treatment, it’s not about what things cost. It’s about maximizing quality of life and preparing for the inevitable.

Lao Tzu Prayer Flag Teaches ToleranceI have cancer.

I acknowledge the fact that it will take me someday. But this is by no means an excuse for complacency. And it is no reason to be sad. Au contraire, mon chien. It is a fact of life, and death. And it calls for celebration of every beautiful day.

As the alcoholics say, acknowledgement is the first step. But it is the most important one. Denial is not just a river in Egypt. It can wreck havoc on human emotions.

The recent discussion thread about when to say when in the Tripawd forums really got me thinking about how much people hurt when they lose their beloved furry friends.

It also showed me what great support people can have for others in need.

But why must it be so hard in the first place? People get pets, knowing their lives are finite. Yet they immediately hide that truth somewhere deep, and wrap their hearts around us so tight, that when our time comes, it is hard to let go.

Since I first got sick, my people have been trying to prepare for the sad day when they will have to say goodbye. Yes, it will be unbearably hard on them. But they like to think it will be easier having had time to ready themselves emotionally. But exactly how does one prepare for such a dark reality?

I say listen to Lao Tzu. Understand the truth. Become tolerant. Welcome reality.

If you don’t realize the source,
you stumble in confusion and sorrow.

When you realize where you come from,
you naturally become tolerant, disinterested,
amused, kindhearted as a grandmother,
dignified as a king.

Immersed in the wonder of the Tao, you can deal
with whatever life brings you, and when death comes
you are ready.

Lao Tzu

One thing is certain about my condition. My people have gained a much deeper appreciation for life. Every single bit of it. Instead of the stone which gets worn down by a river of tears, they strive to be more like the duck which lets the water roll off its back as it slowly paddles upstream.

How zen of them. We’ll see if it works. But if I have my way, no time too soon.

6 Responses to “Buying Time on an Emotional Budget”

  1. I hope It’s never ro late to “reply”, even if it’s years later!

    Thanks for reminding us what I guess we all know as we re-enter this world in our earth clothes, but seem to forget once we become “human”.

    Thank you for reminding us to stay immersed in the wonder of the Tao. How so very Zen of you Mr. Jerry G. Dawg!

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