Easy is Overrated!

In my last blog, I invited everyone to join me, every morning, in putting pen to paper to answer the following questions:

  1. What will make your life easier today?
  2. At the end of the day, if you feel it’s been a good day, what will have happened?

I was raised Catholic so, time for the confessional. I did a poor job of this assignment.

Question 1 was the sticking point. Why is it that I can so easily figure out what will make someone else’s life easier but, when it comes to my own, it’s a mystery? As I ponder this, I think the answer may not be as simple as deciding that I don’t know how to take care of myself. That’s an easy answer and most of us who were born to nurture have, at one time or another believed this to be true.

The answer as to why I found Question 1 difficult is twofold:

(1)   Truthfully, my life is already easy. I have used the Law of Attraction over many years to attract a life that’s pretty darned good. I have everything I need, much of what I want, and no major life problems at the moment. Yes, I am grieving over the loss of Bill but that is part of the Circle of Life. We lose loved ones. We grieve. And it doesn’t mean that life is terrible.

(2)   If I am totally honest, I don’t really want my life to be easier. I want it to be more meaningful, more exciting and richer in all that makes life worth living. “Easy” is overrated. I’ve had easy and all it does is make things well, easy, but it doesn’t make things fun, or interesting or compelling. For me at least, “easy” leaves me unmotivated. Give me something difficult to do and I am more alive than ever. That’s probably why I love caregiving so much. I am not a trained nurse and yet, every day I take care of someone who is ill, I am forced to tap into a well of creativity I wasn’t aware I had.

Here’s an example from many years ago. Two years after my mother-in-law moved in and survived a series of surgeries and related complications, she had a stroke that left her paralyzed on one side. We had a monitor in her room so we could hear if she needed anything. One afternoon, she was sitting in the chair in her room watching TV. I was in the kitchen and heard, over the monitor, a voice, totally without panic, say, “Help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.”  Mama had a great sense of humor.

Sure enough, when I went in to check, she was sitting on the floor. She told me she’d kicked off her slipper by mistake, stretched out her good leg in an attempt to retrieve it and slid right off the chair and onto the carpet.

Here was the dilemma. Mama’s room was very narrow. Where she had landed was a four-foot space between her bed and a giant window overlooking our back yard. I called my husband in to try and figure out how to get her back into bed without hurling her through the window. Because of her stroke, she was dead weight, making it all the more challenging. Just about the time we were contemplating calling the fire department, it hit me! I remembered how patients in hospitals were transferred from one bed to another by putting a doubled up sheet beneath them. We laid down a doubled up sheet, positioned Mama so she was lying on it and hoisted her onto the bed. It was so easy!

Call me crazy but I LOVE that kind of problem solving. Whether it’s caring for another or just tackling a particularly hairy problem at work, it’s exhilarating! I think that’s why we humans make up problems in the first place—so we can solve them. My guess is, if I could wave a magic wand and take away all your problems, some of you wouldn’t be finished reading this blog before you’d be inventing new ones!

So…time for a different Question 1:  What will make my life more __________ today? (Fill it in for yourself—exciting, interesting, fun—you get to choose what you want more of.)

From Readers: 

I love when you let me know how it’s going. Here are a few wonderful insights from readers about my last blog:

Renee V:  My life will be made easier today if I have let go of others’ burdens, no matter the size or scope. It will have been a good day today if at the end of the day I have shared my true self with others while staying true to myself. 

From Deb R about grief: “One cannot step twice into the same river, for the water into which you first stepped has flowed on.”