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Having sarcoidosis makes breathing a challenge. I have come to cherish air in new and profound ways. I appreciate every time my lungs are actually physically able to expand and contract, even if they can’t quite get the right amount of air in or out of them. The point is, I am still breathing.

You can’t live without air but the ironic thing about having sarcoidosis is that while I have a lot less air, I feel more alive than I ever have before.

I’m not happy that I don’t breath easily but the challenges I am faced with, give me such great opportunities to mature in my thinking and actions and not being able to breath has actually helped me learn to live better.

I suppose it comes down to the simple fact that as humans we take things for granted until we don’t have those things anymore. Breathing is one of those things for me.

But, I am learning that just because I used to breath easier, didn’t really mean that I had it better. Sure, certain things were better. I can’t deny that. I had more physical strength with more air for one thing, so I don’t want to belittle breathing easy. It has its advantages.

Having air taken away from me though, has given me a new and different insight into life. I’ve been forced to slow down, considerably. My world shrank. People don’t understand my experience. Yet, because of theses things, I have a deeper appreciation for what is, what will be and what was.

I know now, that so much of what I fused and worried about once just doesn’t matter. I know now that each moment is a gift because each breath is one too. I know now that I cannot predict the future, nor would I want to. All I can do, is live simply and fully in the very moment I am in. Every gasp for air reminds me of this now and in the most unexpected way, I find comfort in this. I am grateful for it.

So, it takes more than air to live. It takes the awareness that time is fleeting and as such should be treated with the honor it is due. It takes more than air to live. It takes a desire to be present in the here and now because there is no other moment than this one that matters most. It takes more than air to live because without gratitude, love and respect for today, you cannot appreciate yesterday or look forward to tomorrow.

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