It seems odd to me that most people go through life imagining that they know exactly what will happen and get shocked or surprised if things don’t go the way they expect. It is even stranger to me that those same people appear to believe that they are immortal.

Today I had a conversation with someone whose friend is close to death at the age of 39. It reminds me of the time I watched my step-daughter die a few days past her 21st birthday following a year long struggle with cancer, and of my own daughter’s vigil as she cared for her friend who died a year ago from the same disease. I am also thinking of the birth of my two daughters and two grandsons, the youngest of who is coming up to his 21st birthday.

In this cycle of life, death is the only certainty after birth. Everything else is subject to change and is full of uncertainty. That’s what gives life its spice. The very uncertainty can move us to grow in ways that we may never have dreamed were possible. So, when I hear people caught up in the fear of impending change and uncertainty about what the future holds, I see that they have trapped themselves in the belief that life is certain and wanting to hang on to that belief.

Maybe knowing that only death is certain might help us to live life a little more adventurously. After all, if life had no surprises for us at all; if we knew exactly what would be happening every day for the rest of our life, we might feel safe, but at what cost to our human spirit?

In peace

Warren Redman

Author's Bio: 

Warren Redman trained in the UK as a psychotherapist, facilitator and coach and has developed his own unique style of Emotional Fitness Coaching. He is president of the Emotional Fitness Institute (formally the Centre for Inner Balancing), writing about, teaching and coaching people in Emotional Fitness. He is the author of fifteen books, including the Award-winning The 9 steps to Emotional Fitness, Achieving Personal Success and Recipes for Inner Peace.

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