“Joyce, it was that conversation that got me through the next terrifying six weeks of my life,” said my client (who is quite frankly one of the absolute best human beings I have ever known.) William was referring to our previous session, which occurred just days before his shocking diagnosis of nearly stage four cancer.
The discussion we had was about mindfulness, the importance of staying deeply rooted and connected in the present moment, rather than letting one’s “mind chatter” obsess about the past or worry about the future. I had explained to William that staying in the present provides grounding, peace, clarity and quality of life. I had also recommended that he read, The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle.
William shared that while he was going through countless tests and treatments, he chose not to place his awareness on thoughts about his cancer and prognosis. Instead, he mindfully focused his attention on his breath, the feelings inside his body, and even the music that played in the hospital as he was getting a CAT scan (which he said was a pretty enjoyable Madonna song, with a smirk.) He also listened to the audio version of The Power of Now whenever possible (and still does, by the way.)
He continued, “I realize now that it is as if in life, the needle sets on a record album the moment we are born and continues to cycle as we live. If we bring our awareness to the past or to the future, we scratch our record and there is no music. If we stay in the present moment, we hear the beauty of our song.”
I told you he is amazing. With a brilliant mind, a heart of gold and the courage of a lion, he is a man amongst men. I consider it an enormous compliment and a high honor to have served as his therapist for nearly a decade.
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