Sunday, January 17, 2016
One of the big guy's photos.
I'm reading a very good book right now, "When Breath Becomes Air" by Paul Kalanathi. It's about a thirty-six year old neurosurgeon, diagnosed with stage four lung cancer. He was a wonderful writer and it sounds like he was a wonderful doctor as well. He thought about life and death. He cared about his patients.
We had no TV or internet connection last night so I read for quite awhile before bed, well an hour. I usually don't read for longer than an hour. I get antsy. The big guy was asleep and there was nothing to do. I shut off the light and lay wide awake in bed.
I prayed, as I do every night. For the past sixteen years I have gone through my day and said a prayer of thanks before I go to sleep. And then I ask for things. Please keep my children healthy and safe. Please give a friend a peaceful death. Please help my granddaughter learn how to sleep through the night. Those kinds of things.
I always pray for my children. I want Katie to be free of her anxiety. I want my son to be productive, to find a job, to stop lying. I want my middle daughter to be happy. I want a lot of things beyond my control.
I know very little about my son's life during the ten years he was a drug dealer. We saw him intermittently. He was often high when he came over. Often depressed. I know he suffers from depression. I want him to be successful. Not successful as in make a lot of money but rather successful as in find a job that is in his field, get married, live a normal life, have children. This past week I've changed my thinking, help me to accept and love my son as he is, right now. He is imperfect, unhappy and struggling. Help me to love him as he is, not how I want him to be.
And then I expanded this to help me to love and accept all of those I care about, as they are. And then I noticed myself and prayed for help to accept myself as I am, at which point I burst into tears. And I realized I still don't love and accept myself as I am, nor did I ever have this kind of love from my family. The wonderful thing is, I can learn how to do this and then I can give this gift to my children and their children.
How hard can it be? To accept and love oneself, as I am? And yes I am being facetious, because I do love to laugh.