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Aren’t You Precious?!

by Milissa on October 9, 2011

in Health,Nature,Quotation,Trees,Uncategorized,Yoga

Being on a cancer journey with a loved one, I’ve seen firsthand how much love and appreciation flows forth from friends, family members and colleagues for the person undergoing the health crisis. I saw this a few years ago, too, when a girlfriend was diagnosed with brain cancer. And currently, I’m noticing this with two people I know who are in the process of being treated for cancer. Their Caring Bridge pages tally hundreds of log-ins by concerned people and dozens of friends and family members leave well wishes.

What I’ve observed, sitting beside someone who’s got “The Big C,” as my mom has always called it, while he reads and recounts all the supportive messages from near and far, is how very much it means. How much—when our foundation is shaken—we look to others, not only for strength, but for acknowledgment. Each affirmation of courage, grace under fire and wisdom that’s being put forth on the healthcare blog site is really taken to heart. And, I think, more than anything, what gets taken in is that recognition we’re all hungry for of our essence.

As the Sufi mystic Hafiz said:

Admit something: Everyone you see, you say to them, “Love me.”
Of course you do not do this out loud, otherwise someone would call the cops.
Still though, think about this, this great pull in us to connect. Why not become the one who lives with a full moon in each eye that is always saying, with that sweet moon language, What every other eye in this world is dying to hear?

The message that most of us want to hear (but rarely do unless we’re in a life-or-death situation) is, “You matter.” We want to know that just by being ourselves, living our lives as best we can, we make a difference to people.

If we were braver and more willing to really share our feelings heart-to-heart (which is especially hard for those of us who are descendents of Northern European immigrants), we’d just come out and and say it: “You are so precious.” Not just to our kids, our pets, or our lovers, but to all the people in our lives who matter to us.

What I’m noticing is that we save it for when people get really sick. I’m glad—given all the trials and indignities that cancer patients need to endure—that most seem to get this affirmation of their basic goodness and value. And that looks, from where I’ve sat—in radiation therapy waiting rooms, and chemo infusion lounges, and in front of my computer screen logged onto a Caring Bridge site—to be life-changing for those who are taking in all that love.

So, here’s my question: What if we didn’t need to get sick with a life-threatening illness to know we are precious? Of course, we can’t rely on others to tell us that we are (especially if our community is tight-lipped when it comes to expressing emotions). And, even if our loved ones and colleagues do tell us and show us we are valued, it doesn’t always get through all our filters of self doubt and judgment.

So, where can you go to remember your inherent preciousness? To your yoga mat? To your relationship with Source? To your easel or keyboard where you create from your deepest self? Or to a tree? To nature?

Every account I’ve ever heard from people who have had near-death experiences, tells of an overwhelming feeling of how completely and absolutely loved they are, just as they are.

What if we could just drop all the neurotic bull—right NOW (not once we’re faced with our possible demise)—and say to our own selves, “You are so precious!”

In the words of Raymond Carver:

And did you get what you wanted in this life, even so?

I did.

And what did you want?

To call myself beloved, to feel myself beloved upon the earth.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

nikki baker October 10, 2011 at 7:25 am

A beautiful piece of writing Milissa. And yes I think to know that we are loved and that we matter is the essence of things. i have been down to occupy Mn. a few times and i would say that is a huge part of what i felt being expressed there and i found it uplifting. Thank you for giving words to that for me! And much love to you friend.

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Milissa October 10, 2011 at 8:34 am

@Nikki You are so precious!

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Lee Engfer October 10, 2011 at 8:26 am

Thanks, Milissa, for the beautiful thoughts.

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Milissa October 10, 2011 at 8:34 am

@Lee You and your children are so precious!

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Patricia Cumbie October 12, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Beautifully done, Milissa. Your work has so much value to the world.

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Milissa October 12, 2011 at 2:56 pm

As does yours @Patricia. Especially your beautiful fiction and creative prose.

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pj October 24, 2011 at 1:34 pm

Milissa,
That is so well expressed. Thank you.

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