Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Live each day as if it is your last ...

I've been "journeying" alongside Earnie Larsen, a fellow parishioner at St. Joan of Arc catholic church as he shares letters and lessons after learning he had stage IV pancreatic cancer. I've never met Earnie yet his writing, reflections and gift of writing has allowed so many of us to walk with him on his final days. He learned he had stage IV pancreatic cancer in the fall of 2010. Doctors first estimated he had 2 years to live ... their best guess ... so he began writing "Letters" to share with his family, friends and the community his reflections ... then in December when he met with his oncologist he learned he probably only had 2 more months, and he decided to write 12 lessons as he approached his final days. I shared one of his lessons on a recent blog post ... dancing with God. Early yesterday morning Earnie passed away peacefully. On the St. Joan website they share his unfinished lessons 4 -6. He is now up in heaven, dancing with God. He blessed so many of us with the gift of his writing, his reflections and his willingness to open up his heart to strangers ... as he approached his final days.

I have been blessed with some initial positive news regarding my own pancreatic issues. I also know that there are changes going on in my body at a cellular level ... I was reminded when I got a call the other day from my surgeon's office reminding me about my breast "issues" and scheduling an MRI and the risks associated with waiting ... I don't know what tomorrow will bring. I would never have imagined that my life would be what it is today. Worry and stress takes a toll on one's body. I guess i've had my share of that over the past couple years. I pray for strength, courage, wisdom, compassion ... and to keep moving inward towards my core and to find my voice and to simply speak my truth with love and kindness.

Four months ago Earnie Larsen had no idea he was dying. In many ways, I believe he was blessed to know his end was approaching so he could prepare himself and others. Many of us won't be quite so lucky to know our end is approaching. So live today as if it's your last ... because the truth is, we don't know.

Rest in peace Earnie ... and dance with God and let your spirit soar and continue to sprinkle the lives of so many of us who have been touched by your words.

1 comment:

  1. Earnie Larson, his writing and speaking appearances had a huge impact on my life. So sorry to hear that he is no longer with us.