A Letter To My Future Self in Time of Disability

Dear Future Rudy,

I know when you read this in 2 to 3 years you will be out of the pain and misery that I find myself in today. In reality, the pain I speak about is not so much the physical pain of a disc rupture that has invaded my mind all weekend, but the pain of seeing such hard truths of life so clearly. Nonetheless, it is important that I write this letter today for the important recollection that it can serve to me from now on in my life.

For while I sit alone in my bedroom for the majority of this weekend nursing an ailing back and largely feeling sorry for myself and the past, I am also blessed to have re-seen an important perspective that can only come in these times.

The first, is how precious and delicate life really is. It can be taken away from us in an instant. You must never take it for granted or neglect to use the time you have on this Earth for the right purpose, which can be self-defined but must always lead to the eventual goal of being free to always be true to oneself. Even the thought of living in a less capable state can steal life energy and precious moments away from us. In this regard, it’s important to remember that the only moment that matters is the current one, not the past nor the anxiety ridden future of what may happen. There is a self-fulfilling aspect to fixating on a negative future, and it’s important to clear one’s subconscious of such thoughts quickly. Our state of mind is intricately tied to our state of usefulness, which takes great impacts when physical disabilities come our way.

The second is how important it is to remove distraction from a sole purpose that will make life meaningful to us. Distraction can come in the form of material things as easily as it can in trivial matters to attend to. Distraction can come from extraneous items that only serve to create anxiety and stultification. Distraction includes becoming wrapped up in ego driven fixations that distort one’s perspective and clarity, because once they are viewed from a rear-view mirror they seem quite preposterous and unworthy of efforts expended. Such is the waste and futility of lesser wisdom. In the moment some pursuits take on a life of their own, at a cost that is not realized until much later and much too high. Damaging infatuations with hobbies and avocations are among the silliest of them all, and show a lack of focus and errant thinking. If I am lucky, I will escape the need to endure great pain throughout my life due to short term thinking and obsession, and my current state of affairs will be but a hard educational lesson.

The last is the importance of savoring every moment with family and friends. As we age, solitary times are both a fortune and a punishment, particularly when one spends the time considering the hard truths of life. In the end, this is all we have on this earth. If we are lucky, a set of memories that will have been compiled with a distant recollection that we lived life fully with people that mattered, people that may at least remember one’s true spirit fondly after they are gone, if even for a brief moment. Most importantly, those memories of having lived a full life are accountable only to you and no one else. Only you will judge yourself for the life you led, and what you did with your time. Others will take the most favorable view of it. It is easy to lose perspective on the goal of some endeavors in life when one is aimless and half dedicated to an inner purpose. It cannot be enough to say one is here to survive. To avoid this consequence, one must say one is here to live and be wholly present, to have completely existed in our truest loving selves at all times and to achieve our true purpose in life.

In case you have forgotten these poignant lessons this weekend of solitude gave you in a trying time, remember to live the only life you will ever have with these three important principles completely present to you always.

Your most cherished,

Your Past Rudy