A woman in the church whose husband has been fighting cancer for the last six months just told me that the doctor had given him two to five years. When the diagnosis was first given, the life expectancy was a matter of months at best. This news sent her out of the doctor’s office dancing—and to Chilis for margaritas! I bet it’s good advertisement for an oncologist to have a woman to come out of the office dancing!

The couple has been married over 50 years. They thought it was over, but they have a reprieve. Celebration is definitely in order. But now how are they going to live the next two-to-five years? I’m sure there will be a special poignancy in what they choose to do, where they choose to go and who they choose to be with.

The poignancy is not a product of their situation, it is a result of their awareness of the situation. The meaning of what we do, where we go and who we choose to be with is not dulled by our inattention. It is just as powerful, even if it is just beyond our conscious awareness. It is in times like these that the veil of daily living is pulled back and we see, not death, but life for what it has been all along. To be aware of the poignancy of life, to learn to live without the veil (rather than having it pulled away) is to live a life of wide-awake gratitude. It’s enough to dance to.

May I always dance!


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