Pura Vida! It's been a while since my son and I got back from our amazing trip to Costa Rica, and now we're getting ready for our next adventure in South East Asia! We were there for less than a week and we made it count! Zip lining, white water rafting, crocodiles and monkeys; these only begin to describe how much fun we had. What made it even better is how spontaneous it was! We booked the tickets 2 weeks before our departure date. So what sparked such a spontaneously awesome trip? Well, not such awesome stuff. In the first 2 weeks of July, I was told I might have breast cancer, bladder cancer, and that I had Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3. In one week, I had a mammogram, breast biopsy, and cystoscopy, and I had to confront the very real possibility of what the outcome might be.
I don’t let things like this overwhelm me or interfere with the way I live my life. I grew up with the mindset of not worrying about something unless I was told to worry, and then there would be no time to worry because I had to figure out what my plan of action would be! I didn’t stop having fun or working and it really didn’t change what I was doing other than the time spent at the doctor. However, it did give me some perspective. It reminded me that we never know how much time we have and that nothing lasts forever. It reinforced to me not to take anything for granted. Things can change at any moment. I understand how people could see this as depressing, but the way I see it, it’s a positive reminder to live life to the fullest. It’s because nothing lasts forever that we can and should enjoy it while it’s there and appreciate it in the first place.
Towards the end of July, I got the results back. I do not have breast cancer or bladder cancer and I’m learning how to manage CKD3 which isn’t fatal but does require some changes. There is no point in stressing over things that can’t be changed, so instead I think about what I can do. That’s where the trip to Costa Rica was born. I wanted to go on an adventure and so I went! Life is too short to worry about things that truly don’t matter. Think about things that you want to do, what is important to you and the kinds of people you choose to be around, and figure out a way to pursue them. Don’t waste the time you have because the situation isn’t perfect (it may never be), or because the hotel you would really like is too expensive (stay somewhere else) or because if you are going all that way, it really should be for longer (let the trip be a shorter one). Tomorrow is guaranteed to no one. Just do it, with a positive attitude! Smile and laugh and enjoy all that life has to offer.