Young woman holding an open pocket watch

I spent the morning at the cardiologist or more specifically – on a treadmill at the cardiologist hooked up for an EKG.  I’ve been having some mysterious chest pains.  I’ve also been diagnosed with 2 different autoimmune diseases and high cholesterol.  All of these ailments have popped up in the last month or so which is ironic considering the past two months have consisted of the best self-care regiment I’ve ever had….in my life.

For the most part, I’ve been rolling with the punches on all this and not stressing too much about it all.  I believe my body is transitioning and trying to find its new baseline.  30+ years of habits are not going to be undone in 2 months.

I’m working hard to release the resentment that surrounds the choices that got me here. Some days, it comes easy – I accept that everything happens for a reason and all my decisions have led me to this point – making me a wiser, more experienced and resilient person.

Today, is NOT one of the days. Today, I was pissed off – furious with the old me who had inflicted such abuse on her body over the past decade or more.  The person that brought me to this point- who is so smart but couldn’t think her way into make healthy decisions.  Putting (as Brene Brown would say) “performing, perfecting, pleasing, and proving” at the top of her ToDo list – over family, friends, and herself.  Yes, I accomplished amazing things, started a family and excelled at many areas of life. But at what expense?

The old me made a choice to use the most precious of all commodities in an inauthentic way, not respecting it and taking it for granted.  This precious commodity is not money, material things, happiness, or – ITS TIME.  It’s the one thing that I cannot get back.

I used to get so frustrated when people said “enjoy these moments – they go by quickly” in regards to my children.  The moments can be long when you have children.  But now, I get it – not necessarily in regards to my children – but pertaining to life as a whole.  The full “aha moment” manifested when the war in my mind finally quieted today.

I felt fear in that “aha moment.”  It was a deep fear pertaining to how close I came.  How close I came to waking up -30 years from now – realizing I made a tragic miscalculation with my life.  Looking around and not seeing anything that truly represented my authentic self.  Regret filling my mind because I finally realized just how deep the “performing, perfecting, pleasing and proving” had infiltrated my life.  How much it had influenced my family…my children.

Every moment of your life can be treated as an educational one especially when you’re focused on being self-aware.  I believe today’s moments of anger were there to bring about the fear and ultimately teach me a lesson.  To remind me that I’d dodged a bullet and that it is so easy to lose yourself and not realize it.  Sara Bareilles articulates this the best when she sings:

“Sometimes life just slips in through a back door
And carves out a person
And makes you believe it’s all true”

I urge you – look ahead 30 years – and envision your life.  Think of the feelings and how wisely you have used the precious commodity of time. Truly focus on ensuring life comes through the front door.  Make it ring the doorbell multiple times and consciously choose who and what comes in.  This approach doesn’t mean you’ll be completely regret free.  But it will guarantee you never regret not making a conscious effort towards an authentic life.