Call it an eye opener, an 'aha' moment, a revelation. Whatever you want to call it, it's happened. I'm so grateful to have had this realization relatively early on in what I hope will be this long life of mine.
Things that come naturally to me:
I'm a rule follower - big time. You tell me it needs or is supposed to be done, and it is done.
I'm a people pleaser. Which can sometimes create...
An overachiever. Which can be a good thing because it makes me...
A hard worker.
Those who know me well also know that I have a difficult time doing anything "just so-so". I generally commit everything I've got to anything I take on.
Good or bad, these characteristics are me - and I'm proud of me. But I'm even more proud of me now that I've learned (and continue to learn) what I see as the deeper, more important goal for my life.
Every now and again (ok, maybe a little more often than that) the above characteristics were tempting me into missing moments. Passing on something I'd love to do because I'd have too much work to do. Avoiding an evening out so that I didn't stray from my health/fitness goals. Missing moments.
Until the following became so very clear to me:
This life I've been given is a gift - a gift that has an unknown expiration date. I'm pretty sure I've got a nice, long life to live and it's incredibly important to me that I have no regrets. I'm quite certain that when my time is up, I will feel proud of how hard I've worked, how loyal I've been and that I've played by the rules. I'm also quite certain that what will stand out the most are the moments. Moments I refuse to miss.
There will always be work - that's a great thing because I love to work and I love what I'm doing. I am so thrilled that my health and fitness has become a priority for me. The time I have with family and friends mean more to me than anything else. There IS space and time for all of it.
I will always be a rule follower. A trustworthy, hard working people pleaser. I will also live and experience life to the fullest. If it makes me happy, I will do it.
I'm alive. And I will never, EVER take that for granted.