I have had a few enlightening encounters with my patients in the last few weeks. Recently, one of my patient's wife made an intense comment: "He gasps and chokes in sleep. I can't let him die like this! Two of my family members passed away in the last few years and I could not save them. I can't let it happen again!!" This led to a discussion. Another young patient in his 70's said to me today he probably has five to ten more years to live considering how sickly he is. This led to another discussion. A third patient said: "I know I have neglected myself and my family for the last several years. I have been spending all my time at work. I now want to switch my life around."
I just want to share a few of my thoughts from these encounters.
We all know we did not choose whether, when, and where to arrive in this world and won't choose the time of our death either. This fact however gets lost on us while we struggle in our lives to go to school, learn, have jobs and families, in the process developing a false sense of control over ours and our loved ones' lives.
Its not about how long we live. Its how we live. A healthy, useful, long life. A productive, loving life. The duration does count, but the quality does lots more.
While death is certain for every living organism, a realization of this absolute fact makes the job of making the best of every second, minute, hour and day of life even more significant.
Given good health care and a balanced lifestyle, people should be able to live happily way past 100 years. To have a fatalistic attitude towards life as one gets older prevents the person from enjoying every day of life that they still do have.
Its not about choosing between work and family. Its about finding a balance.
We can not hang on to those we love. We have to let go of them in order to love them.
The need to control.... a quality shared by many smart, intellectually gifted people is most often a major factor in them feeling unable to relax, let go, fall and stay asleep. This is a sign of loss of that delicate balance in life that is necessary for health, wellness and happiness.
This is exactly why we need to work hard towards restoring that balance, learning to control and let go, learning to live and die, by retraining our minds.
We need to learn to Relax, Sleep better and Perform at our best, for a healthy, longer, happier, more fulfilling life.