Okay, for some crazy reason, maybe a genie, a shooting star, maybe a fairy, birthday candles, or perhaps a leprechaun unbelievably grants me three wishes.
What would I wish?
Now, I have never bought a lottery ticket.
I was once given tokens to spend as part of a weekend package that included a visit to a casino. I gave the tokens away.
So this opportunity will be a real challenge for me. How big or small should I wish? Well…
Health, wealth, and happiness are the first things that come to mind.
But then I think of the book “Tuck Everlasting” by Natalie Babbit. The family finds and drinks from the fountain of youth. It is, of course, a mixed blessing. The gift of perpetual health would mean no death and that doesn’t necessarily mean happiness. Now I’m thinking that if immortality is what I’d wish for, it is the result of perpetual health.
Maybe a better wish would be that no one I love would get sick or die…before they were ready??? Hum…that doesn’t really seem right either. I was just visiting a relative who was over 100. When she was asked by a visiting nurse if she wanted to be resuscitated should she be found unconscious, she replied with an emphatic, “YES”!
The nurse went on to explain that she didn’t often bring up a person’s age, but when one is over 100, you are rather fragile. And in that case, CPR can do painful damage such as broken ribs and punctured lungs.
My relative responded, “Well, I’ll deal with that when I’m alive.”
I mean, no one wants to die from breast cancer at 32 or painfully in a car accident, right? But I would assume that when you’re over 100, you might say something more along the lines of ” Well, I guess my time has come. I’ve lived a good, long life.”
But it appears as though some people are pretty attached to living, no matter their age.
Oh goodness. Haven’t we all seen the movies where the main characters choose a large sum of money in exchange for…something?
Then there are the horror stories of people who win the lottery and struggle with bankruptcy a few years later.
I would love to have more money than I do right now. If my family had more money, that would be awesome too. But where do you draw the line? Do you remember the Grimm Brothers’ Fairy Tale “The Fisherman and His Wife” where a greedy fisherman’s wife is granted every wish (each more elaborate and expensive than the last) but doesn’t find happiness?
So it’s HAPPINESS, right?
As far as happiness goes, I wonder if you can really appreciate happiness without the opposite—sadness to compare it to and mirror the emotion. Here I think back to the 2013 movie “About Time”. The men in the family could go back in time to change the future. Initially, the young man used the skill to benefit his love life. But as the movie went on, he used the gift less and less as he worked to enjoy each day, hour, and minute to the fullest. The lesson of the movie is to live your life in a way that you wouldn’t want to relive, because the first time around was wonderful.
NO THANK YOU?
So maybe I just have I wish for myself, my friends, and my family is that we would each view the moments of life as precious and irreplaceable. The time we have here on the earth, in this life, is longer for some, and shorter for others.
The real value of the time we have is to decide what we want, work to achieve those goals, and appreciate those people and events that we so often overlook.
It always makes me cry at the end of the movie when the person’s dying thoughts are walking hand in hand with a loved one or playing in the surf with a laughing child.
I guess my wish is for a deep appreciation…mindfulness and gratitude for all we are blessed with.
So, my three wishes are that I would live with mindfulness and gratitude. A second wish is the same for my family, and the third is ditto for my friends.