‘You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.’ – Mae West
This quote has caused me so much anxiety. Why? The pressure of it all, the late night thoughts, the daytime fears. Of what? Of whether I am indeed doing it right the first, and only, time. I mean really, what is the big idea putting this much pressure on ourselves? Each day, does each day have to count? What if there are multiple days that seem to mean nothing, what if at the end of a month you still feel miserable? What if there is a point where you’re waiting for years to pass because some part of you knows things will be better then? And you’re counting down your life, your life?!
Dust settles, realization begins.
I’ve always had this fear, tucked away, that I wouldn’t make the most of this life, for myself and for those I’ve lost along the way.
It’s not what you do but how you do it. How you are at any moment. How you are at living. How you are at being, picking up when you feel like sitting down, crawling forward when your last bit of energy could be given to rest. 2012 has brought that understanding to me. I know how naive and silly it seems a year can bring progress, momentum? What is this? Still it’s my perspective change leading into this new period.
Saying that 2012 brought this is a summary to what really is: which is that I allowed myself to understand this quote, this mantra, now. Now when I needed it. Now when I needed to remember what life used to be like, the care free way; not that bills and stress aren’t always there. Hardships can be easier by how we handle them, who we keep with us during them. All these small insignificant life choices that lead to that living and “doing it right” moment.
To sign off, I hope that we all find value in quotes like these and that when we do it’s the right value. It’s not to create some “extreme” version of life where we “trim the fat” along the way, getting rid of what feels insignificant at the time. The true realization is that each moment, no matter how small, is an invaluable piece.
I’m glad I know that now.