Why me? Why not me?

My sister and I were discussing our various physical challenges that have come upon us as we continue into our older age. Nothing too out of the ordinary, but the longer you live, the likelier it is that something may happen. She drew my attention to a wonderful article by Frank Bruni, former NY Times opinion writer, who woke up one day with "freakishly obscured vision." As he learned the cause (a stroke he'd been unaware of), he thought about others in this world, walking among us, each with their own private battle.


Frank's suggestion is that we should all wear a sandwich board. Like "single parent, child with special needs, nowhere near enough help." Or, how about this one: "Road accident, broken bones, reconstructive surgery, can no longer fully feel a kiss."

It reminded me of a Monday letter I wrote nearly 10 years ago to the day (3/18/12) in which I noted that Valerie Harper had just revealed she had a terminal illness. She'd been saying to herself rather than ask, Why me?, ask, Why not me? She went on to say, in part: "Why would any of us be excluded from the vagaries of life? One of the hardest parts of life might be accepting that we are not special little snowflakes—that we are more alike than we are different, that our pain is not unique, that everyone suffers or loves or stumbles. And we are part of everyone.”

Frank Bruni and Valerie Harper both have it right. Ask not, why me. Ask, why not me? As this world tumbles and stumbles into its future every day -- worldwide, and just for you today, tomorrow -- it's a good practice to ask, well, why not me?


We are all part of everyone.

Peace and love to you in the week ahead.