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Every moment is precious

Published by Susan Gillis Chapman on

“Complaining is a waste of time and I have no more time to waste” said P, a hospice patient during my visit with him on Wednesday.  He had flinched while shifting his posture in bed and I had asked him if he was in pain.  I knew he was and yet I didn’t get the sense that he was pretending it wasn’t there.  He simply didn’t want to make it the main focus of our conversation at that moment.   The day before I’d gone to visit a friend of mine who only a week earlier learned that he is so sick he could die literally at any moment.  What amazed me is that he was surfing this huge tsunami wave of change in his life with the same steady honesty I heard from P.  The point I took away wasn’t about denying pain or the huge impact of suddenly discovering you have no future.  It was about re-focusing on the preciousness of each moment.  A body wracked with illness and pain is no less an embodiment than one that temporarily glides through the day with ease ( remember those days?).  Artist Davida Kidd has an exhibit in the Burnaby Art Gallery on the topic of homes and homelessness.  One image is a once-beautiful home floating away in a flood.  I thought of my friends who are dying and my other friend who was hit by a car while cycling to work last week.  Adjusting to change isn’t easy but these people inspire me because they remain mindful of what is really important:  the preciousness of this moment.  Thank you.  I’m so grateful for the reminder.


Susan Gillis Chapman

teaches part time for Green Zone Institute and for Karuna Training. Susan is a retired Marital and Family therapist who has been practicing mindfulness meditation for over 35 years.  She is the author of the book The Five Keys To Mindful Communication and a contributor to The Mindful Revolution, edited by Barry Boyce. Her website is: http://www.susangillischapman.com. Read more about Susan here.