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Jeruba's avatar

What life lesson have you recently been reminded of or been awakened to for the first time?

Asked by Jeruba (41919 points ) January 14th, 2011

Life delivers little lessons to us all the time, sometimes repeatedly, until we get them.

And then there are the ones that come at us brand new, smack us like a 2×4, because of some new experience or some new way of looking at experience.

What’s yours?

Here’s mine for the week:

Never forget how much your sense of competence and feeling of command of your life depends on your mobility.

I’m not one to take mobility for granted. I remember every day to be grateful for the ability to walk and move under my own power. But until this week I had forgotten how heavily my feeling of independence and self-determination are tied to that—and how helpless, dependent, and needing of compassion are those who have lost it for good.

I have to put up with a major impediment for only eight weeks, but three days are enough to be highly educational.

Let me remember to be generous with assistance to those who have mobility problems, without taking away what they can do for themselves or underscoring their limitations. And let me also remember not to be crabby while I’m stuck needing help. Amen.

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11 Answers

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I happen to be a recovered alcoholic with 11.5 years of sobriety. At a twelve-step meeting recently, I was reminded what it’s like to be a newcomer. I was confronted with a shaking, unclean, beaten, disheveled man who was there for the very first time.

It brought back all the pain and misery that I put myself through for years, and it reinforced my love for the people who were there to offer assistance when I was new. I must never take my sobriety for granted, and when anyone asks for help with alcoholism, I have to ready to freely give what was given to me: acceptance and understanding and help.

kaomungai's avatar

The past few years have been spent trying to “catch up” where I thought I went wrong. I’ve labored at meaningful causes and deadlines. But, I lost people I cared about along the way of “trying to make my life better/the world a better place”. I have to shake my head because the time I was lost…I was still surrounded by people I loved. I can only hope that this time around of ‘doing the right thing’ that I treat my loved ones well and not as an afterthought. I miss them. I hope they would find it in their hearts to come back into my life.

My lesson:

*Slow Down- No matter how busy I become, my loved ones and my own sense of well being are important. Make my loved ones feel special every chance I get. Remember to listen because sometimes their (my) most important concerns take every bit of energy to come out and will do so in a whisper. Old lyrics from a Sheila E go “without love, it ain’t much” a.— I can have success but what is it without people to share?

laureth's avatar

Amongst all the news of the recent shooting in Arizona, I started thinking about the family of that poor little nine-year-old girl that died. I thought how horrible it must be for her family, to have her there and playing one day, and slaughtered the next. It was their neighbor that took her to Giffords’ talk, and I kept imagining in my head how they would love to take back that moment when they said, “Sure, she can go with you,” and avert that particular tragedy. How very slim the slice of time was between alive, and being gone, almost like you could reach back just a few moments and hug her again, if that makes any sense at all.

And this reminded me that we can’t ever tell what will happen tomorrow or next week. Anyone that is around us (or even you or me) could be gone for some reason. Hit by a bus, a stray bullet, anything: death doesn’t just come for those who are ready for it. Being mindful of this has made me hold my loved ones a little closer, to appreciate friends a little more, to be a little less aggrieved when my husband does some boneheaded thing or keeps me awake at night with his snoring. Because in a way, we’re all already gone, and this time we have together is a gift before the inevitable happens. And I realized (again) just how much I’d rather be kept awake by his goose-honk snoring than to be there in our empty bed without him.

Treasure the ones you love. They may not always be there, and what you will have left is today as a memory. Make it good. :)

nebule's avatar

My friend’s ex-husband recently committed suicide, leaving three children without a father. It has penetrated me and reminded me how delicate we are as humans and how the fragility of the mind can take life away from itself.

I am grateful to be alive and although suffer with depression, I am grateful that I can see clearly enough to be here for my son and my self. This spurs me on to find joy, laughter and fun in as much as possible as well as being able to embrace the grief, pains and sorrows of life. Through this, I see in colour.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Forgiveness, it’s a new thing.

lifeflame's avatar

I recently met a teacher who reminded me to sense each present moment as an encounter.
It’s pretty basic, but it has changed my outlook completely on how I understand rehearsals or my teaching.

Usually when I rehearse a play I might ask myself, do I have enough time to cover all the scenes/everything I want to do? But to do this is to assume certain experiences already, it becomes a matter of “delivery”.

When they invited me to teach tai chi in Poland I thought, can I really teach anything substantial in a 24 hour course. But then I thought about it again with this teacher in mind, and I realised, every single session can be a blossom in itself.

Loner2011's avatar

That any child can get cancer.I know that sounds strange,but my oldest son died at age 17 from cancer in 2008.
I know children can get cancer, but when it hits home…..Wow..It hits hard.

nebule's avatar

@Loner2011 crikey, that must be unimaginably hard..sorry x :-( Welcome to Fluther xxxxx

faye's avatar

@Loner2011 so sorry to hear that.

Loner2011's avatar

Thanks everyone..

mattbrowne's avatar

That even good people can be unfair occasionally.

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