Recently, I’ve had to deal with a harsh reality of a family member refusing to undergo medical intervention to save their life. Without it, they would eventually die in two years. The reality is that many of us are going through personal situations at the moment, but not all of us are emotionally equipped to deal with it. After I came home from the hospital visiting them, my boyfriend asked me how I could be so happy when I was staring at such a harrowing situation. That is how you deal with it. Feel and acknowledge all your emotions in the moment. Process and understand them fully. If you decide to suppress them, they will come out in other ways. Deal with the situation in the moment, but it is not something that should permeate the rest of your life. Let go of expectations for others because you will only find disappointment at the end of that rope. Accept that whatever may come will pass with all you could’ve done.
We are not meant to live in grief and misery, yet we think that we have to wallow there to appear as if we care. You can care without doing so. Everything is transitory and the sooner you recognize that, the sooner you will be able to accept any and all outcomes. At the end of the day, I hope you can say that you tried your best and that is all you can hope for. I can live with the idea that I tried my best even if the outcome is not what I predicted, for it is something out of my control. We can only control how we react to situations, not the situations themselves, and yet, we feel guilty when the situation goes awry. We beat ourselves up and hold ourselves accountable for other people’s decisions, forces of nature, and diseases we cannot comprehend. This helps no one and it certainly does not help the situation. We need to learn to reset our feelings everyday so they don’t bleed into each other and only take responsibility for the moment. Start with a clean slate.
We spend our whole lives worrying and hating ourselves for things out of our control and it is these emotions and not the actual events that haunt us. How is it useful to anyone to keep wallowing in these emotions? The only thing it does is destroy our self-esteem and our future relationships with other people who come into contact with us. We carry these shards of hurt with us because we blame ourselves and act as if they do not affect us and when someone happens to stumble upon one, the emotions of the event pricks us with pain. This is what we’ve always done, but it is not healthy.
I once watched a show where a dying man asked a Tibetan monk what to do with his life as he was scared because he was dying. The monk gave some general answers, but this is what I would say: You only have so many days left. Why do you use them to feel anxious and worried? It is okay to feel so, but when it takes over the rest of your life, it is no longer useful. You should worry about the problem for a time, but don’t let it consume the rest of your day. Death is coming for us all and I hope you can die feeling proud of the person you are today. If you are not, then you should take actions to change that. Do all you can physically to live, but mentally, you need to accept that death is coming or you will always worry about something that is out of your control. Enjoy the rest of your days the best you can and tackle situations as they come along, but don’t let them consume the rest of your happiness for you are only cheating yourself out of your own life.