We’ve got to live

I’ve stopped reading The Economist. Not because of any decline in the quality of their reporting. But because they project the world through a negative lens.

There is always a cloud on their horizon. They predict doom and gloom. And they always seem to project the worst possible outcome. With “Just the Facts” journalism becoming an endangered species, is it any wonder that so many of us are tuning it all out?

The great sales trainer, Tom Hopkins, once told me, “We are either coming into a crisis, in a crisis, or coming out of a crisis at any given moment. How we react in each situation determines the outcome.”

Constance Chatterly, D.H. Lawrence’s stoic matriarch states, “Ours is essentially a tragic age, so we (must) refuse to take it tragically. The cataclysm has happened, we are among the ruins.” And yet, she keeps marching forward. “…we start to build up new little habitats, to have new little hopes. It is rather hard work: there is now no smooth road into the future: but we go round, or scramble over the obstacles. We’ve got to live, no matter how many skies have fallen.”

With the passage of years, thrivers learn to endure the unendurable with courage and grace, to find resilience amid pessimism and to treasure magic moments of joy like the nuggets of pure gold they are.

Several weeks ago, I had the privilege of watching a treasured friend in her role as a motion picture director. She was surrounded by a team of dedicated professionals creating a visual experience that will translate into lightning in a bottle on the screen. We are both high-mileage models with aches, pains, and diminished energetic capacity compared to twenty years ago. But in that time and place, everything else dissipated and the only things we felt were the joy of creation and gratitude for the moment.

On Saturday night, friends were texting me about the real-time fates and fortunes of college basketball and hockey teams, broken NCAA brackets and money lost and won in the new world of legalized sports betting.

None of that interested me.

I was too busy laughing and running circles in my granddaughter’s living room while their new puppy chased us. As we celebrate Down syndrome awareness month, I marvel at her patience, tenacity and will.

She is already doing things some said might never be possible. And while she is capable of a melt-down, her resurgence can be instantaneous when she grabs on to another reason to live in the moment with abandon.

To paraphrase Maya Angelou, we will forget the ephemeral numbers associated with meaningless sporting events and corporate profit and loss statements. The sting of hurtful experience will eventually dissipate.

May we choose to live to the fullest in the now and cherish the moments that remind us why.