The truth of life is held, as in a droplet, within a moment, and then everything changes, even as most things stay the same.
As data makes its way as information, compiled meaningfully, assembled truthfully, pulsating in reality, we breathe in and then we breathe out.
Consciousness facilitates thought, which proffers reflection. Therein lays the pain. Or perhaps it’s a case that this information is just a little too surreal. We stare, fully awakened to the truth, not anesthetised, but the information breaks over the senses of our cognitive experience, even as we feel it.
This is how we may be exposed to a life changing moment.
Preparing for a life changing moment is every stretch of wisdom, given the paradox: we cannot possibly prepare for the specificity of such a unique set of mental and emotional requirements.
But if we have learned anything at all about life until this point it’s that pain has the purpose of compelling the instructiveness of experience.
In short, the pain we have experienced in truth – that which we bore upon our reality, not shirking it – has been the very impetus for preparation as harder things come.
Life changing moments are so inevitable we are foolish to not try and anticipate them.
As we do try and guard our wellbeing by envisaging what could happen and how it could cost us, we are not being pessimistic, but we are being wise. Such reflections also nurture the grounded solidity of humility in us.
We can easily borrow some bad outcomes from others; there are plenty of bad news stories going around. Without sufficient faith we would be sunk into an abyss of depression, but with humility we are able to soak up learning – “How would I respond?”
As soon as we recognise that we are open on all counts to the vagaries of life our confidence in our solitary control is obliterated. We begin to respect God – who is the Author of Control. We are not depressed in being the controlled as much as we are grateful for all the many days of our lives when life was safe and predictable.
Life will change dramatically for all of us at some point. We are wise to engage in the humility of tasting others’ dark experiences – even as we empathise.
That life change is inevitable shouldn’t be depressing. If we prepare our hearts for the pain that will come eventually, we may endure the hardship better.
Sailing on the stormy seas is fraught with danger. The time to check all the critical rigging is when the weather is fine, not when we are battered, bruised, and broken.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.