13 April 99

I very much resent that all my resources have been dissipated by the past two days, leaving me nothing-- or very little, to invest here in my journal today. But it is so.

The days haven't been wasted, but they haven't been spent as I would have wished-- had I been given wishes in place of real obligations. I ought to feel good about having met the obligations, but... virtuously racking up brownie points doesn't satisfy me the way it used to. Now I need more. Now I need to know I haven't just met obligations, but that I have... reached higher? Done more, perhaps? Stepped closer to an ideal, maybe... bettered myself and the world in some measure.

Yesterday I got to talk to a lady who is undergoing chemo for a second time. She says she has learned from her terrible illness to know and to treasure what is really, really important. It isn't things, or even worldly achievments, it's making a positive difference in the lives of the people around her. Each day she does what she can to "be there" for others. She helps them make it through the hard times, the lonely times, the bad places-- and she even tries to make the good times better.

As Klaatu (The Day the Earth Stood Still) observed, none of us knows how much time we will be allotted; that is only for the Maker of All Things to determine. And life is a very chancey proposition at best. Even if the doctors give you a year, no one can guarantee you'll even breathe out the very breath you now breathe in, or, if you do, that you'll make it safely back from the post office next time.

Truly, then, does it not behoove us to learn to recognize what is really, really important, to strive to achieve it, to treasure it, and to live each day as if there might not be a tomorrow? I think so.



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