Are You Living?

I can remember being a child and the world telling me, “You can be anything you want, follow your dreams!”  I wish it were really that simple. Oh to be young, naïve and that innocent to believe in that inspirational concept. Nobody tells you openly about the sacrifices one must make in order to “follow your dreams.”  The ugly truth behind what living vs. surviving life is all about.

Oscar Wilde said, “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”  What he meant was most people are surviving, just existing day by day. Most people do not “RISK” what it takes to follow a dream, live an adventure, or cross boundaries. I was one of those people and I know many people just like that. We all do.

What does it mean to really live? Life is full of ups and downs. The reality is most people struggle to get out of the bed and fight battles that the people they encounter daily, know nothing about. It’s amazing how shallow and cold natured our society has become. Rarely, do we get really excited about something. Why? because we are surviving. Most people do the same thing, day in and out, day after day. They do what they need to do to pay their bills, find financial stability, and walk the steady path that is expected of us. We do this day after day putting our dreams on the back burner without realizing just how fast the time goes by.

It takes a lot of courage, discipline, and a deep reasoning behind people who find the strength to pursue their dreams. I realized this the moment my children’s lives flashed before my eyes.  We usually have our own idea of what our dreams should be. Then out of nowhere, life gives you a gift.

Life presents you with a gift when you become aware of your purpose in this life. It changes your values and your perception on your own existence by giving you a purpose and a meaning.

It wasn’t until I was faced with the reality that I may not always be around to care for my children that this “gift” was placed in my lap. You may be saying to yourself, “that doesn’t sound like a gift.” However, it was and it is. I don’t plan on going anywhere any time soon, but it’s no secret that my health has other ideas. My body simply does what it can do, to keep up with my demanding and stubborn mind that refuses to quit.  Here is the thing….

In my survival mode, I wasn’t living with a purpose. I was just doing what I needed to do to live, period. Over the last seven years, life has changed me. I’m not living for me, I’m living for others. In return, I found an entirely new world that is full of so much more, than I ever expected to find. That is why I share my story and want to help other people. I share my daily struggles and the mindset I have to continue to push and fight for not just myself, but others. I fight to give back, to share compassion, understanding, awareness, and truth. I fight to show people, that each day is really a gift. We unwrap it daily and at times we throw it away, by merely surviving.

I never thought that my core essence would be found in helping other people by inspiring them to simply not give up. That regardless of what daily health struggles I’m faced with, how limited my time may be, and through my fears.. I’m still fighting. With my new passions, surviving wasn’t good enough.

With that being said, my fears no longer mattered. Failing and mistakes are simply an opportunity to learn and grow from and try again.  I’m doing the work to pursue my dreams with a lot of conscious effort around growth and change. I’ve realized that my dreams are a result of my true calling.

I wake up everyday thankful for the opportunity and the time to try again. To do better today than I did yesterday. I no longer have time for procrastination or negativity. I no longer worry about “stability.” I know that if I work hard enough the unpredictability will not linger. I do not neglect my body or my mind because with out those, I cannot really function. I’m learning how to slow down… to stop cramming everything in. I’m learning how to cherish moments and fully experience them. I’m also, learning how to say no.  If I don’t really want to do something, I’m not.

I’m no longer afraid of living, but I’m afraid of dying.

Read that sentence over again. I’m no longer afraid of living. Fear holds us back. Don’t allow fear to prevent you from living. You get one life. The act of actually dying… well yes I’m afraid of, but I’m nurturing this life. I’m no longer abandoning my willpower to really live and experience this journey fully. Life, dreams, passions… they all come one day at time. No faster, no slower. Invest your time, resources, and energy into each day to step over boundaries, try something new, grow, and live.

 I hope that with each day you find the courage to live in the colors of possibilities, opportunities, and happiness.