Would you rather…
Which would you rather have? 30 minutes of wonderful or a lifetime of nothing special?
When I started this post, Oxygen was showing Steel Magnolias and as usual I got sucked into it. I shared that it was showing via Facebook and several of my girlfriends are currently watching it as well. (They’ll hate me in the morning…it ran until midnight.) I don’t necessarily need a good cry, but I knew it was coming (and it did). Sally Field’s performance in the cemetery should have been Oscar-worthy; there’s not a true mom in the world who doesn’t relate to that breakdown and learning to laugh through the tears. But, the mom isn’t the focus of this post – it’s the daughter, Shelby (Julia Roberts). One of her statements to her mom really hit home with me tonight:
I would rather have thirty minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.
How many of us feel that way? That we’d rather experience that truly exceptional, wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime moment, even if it was detrimental to our own health, than to go through life never knowing the truly miraculous?
Philosophy of Life
Apparently, I wasn’t the only one moved by Shelby’s statement this go-around. My BFF Karen sent me a text just after I started this post. “Shelby encapsulates my philosophy of life. I didn’t realize until just a few years ago how this movie affected major life decisions.” We talked a little via text and I was reminded that she, like Shelby, has undergone more than her fair share of medical issues. She has an inherited disease called “Marfan syndrome“, had open heart surgery just shy of 40 and was told by doctors that it wouldn’t be safe to carry a child. Unlike Shelby, she made the decision to listen to her doctor; not wanting to risk the chance of leaving her child motherless, she has and will remain childless (although I occasionally offer her my kids…). I believe Karen makes life choices based on this theory in all other areas – she wants to experience and enjoy her life, regardless of how long or short it might end up being. And I love that I get to share adventures with her whenever possible.
What’s Your Philosophy?
I wonder, though, how many people play the safer cards? How many stick to the sidewalk and don’t take the chance of walking across the street or singing in the rain? Is it better to get through life with your heart intact or to risk it for that single wonderful event? This is my question to you today – would you risk everything for a beautiful, shining moment or would you rather have a long life that was unexceptional?
XO – T.