SOUCHERAY: To live is goodI am having an amazing experience this summer that is changing my life. I am volunteering at a hospice.
By: Kate Soucheray, columnist, Woodbury Bulletin
I am having an amazing experience this summer that is changing my life. I am volunteering at a hospice.
Now I know this may sound sad or overwhelming. I know when I initially thought about doing this, I expected it would be a time filled with difficult moments.
It has been exactly the opposite. So much so, that when I leave, I feel as if I am glowing.
You see, the people I am working with have come to a time in their lives when they are able to accept the love and care their families and staff has for them.
It’s not that the time for them is without pain and sadness, because it is for many reasons.
But it is evident everywhere I look and in everyone with whom I visit that there is also so much to be celebrated about life. Anyone who has had an experience with hospice will know what I mean.
I believe it was Harry S. Truman who said, “For all its terrors and tragedies, the life of man is a thing of potential beauty and dignity. To live is good.”
Do we live each day with the thought that to live is good? We often get so rushed in our world today, that we may not even notice that there are other people sharing this world with us.
We may even do something rude, like talk on our cell phone when we’re taking our dry cleaning in, as if the person behind the counter is an extension of the register.
Or we may cut people off on the freeway, or take someone else’s turn at a four-way stop, because we’re late for an appointment. We may try to explain it away by saying that we’re in a hurry and under stress, which justifies our behavior.
If we live each day, however, with the realization that life is good, and that it is for living the best life we can, we may decide to slow down and enjoy it a little bit.
We may think more about our actions and decisions and be sure they are truly life-giving for everyone.
Take some time this summer and slow down a bit. Take the kids to the beach. Or go to Como Zoo for the day and take in the animals, as well as the rides. Buy a snow cone and enjoy the sunshine.
Pack a picnic and sit out on the grass at a Twin Cities park and watch the kids play Frisbee or Wiffle Ball. Engage life because life is good.
Now is the time, not later. There will always be time to make that phone call or visit that client. I know there are things that have to be done. So do those things and then get out and enjoy the day.
We all know there are terrors and tragedies in life. We have all experienced them in one aspect or another and we’re still here reading this, which means we have survived. Those of us in the Baby Boomer generation and beyond have forgotten, in many ways, how to live. We get caught up in the tragedies of life, or the terrors that may happen, and we forget to live today.
I stopped in a local coffee shop this week and found a large group of men and women, all my parent’s age, sitting in a large group, talking and enjoying a cup of coffee and a morning of friendship.
These people know what it is to sacrifice, but also how to have fun with very little. They know that life has its shares of terrors and tragedies, but that to live is good.
Take time to be present this week. Make a date and let nothing come between you and your child or a loved one and the event you have planned. Hold true to your commitment and allow the other to count on you and your word.
Have fun and remember that life is good and that it is a thing of beauty!
Kate Soucheray is a Woodbury resident. Her columns on life appear weekly in the Woodbury Bulletin.