History or legend, fact or fiction, there are millions of stories written in books, told through generations, shared through song, that help solidify beliefs in a higher being and an afterlife.
I read or hear or watch people’s journeys with faith, and to be honest, I often judge. Every person’s belief system is their own, and truly a choice and feeling only oneself can truly know and understand. But when those who choose to make their faith public or make statements about others based solely on religious doctrine, I cringe with distaste.
Call it God, call it faith, call it what you want, but in the end, it’s all the same.
We all want, yearn, need to know that there is more than this. This life, this path we are navigating, this journey full of treaturous obstacles and endless heartbreak just has to lead to something more. This just can’t be all there is.
I have a very good friend who has a very dear mom. They are a source of support and compassion for countless people, and they have a faith that rarely wavers and always leads them to treat others with kindness, follow their hearts, and live their lives with passion and adventure.
They have a saying when it comes to decision-making, and they’ve shared it with me many times when I’ve reached a crossroads or felt my pain had become insufferable.
“This is not a dress rehearsal,” they tell me. We get one chance, one life, one shot. So do it big, make it grand, give it everything and regret nothing.
While I truly appreciate the sentiment, and totally agree with the YOLO craze, I fear my sweet angel in Heaven has me believing something different.
Maybe this is the dress rehearsal. Maybe my sweet angel, your sweet angels, all our beautiful departed loved ones are looking at us from above and laughing, while eating ice cream for breakfast and Oreos for dinner, saying things like, “Good effort, Mommy! You can slip and fall, and make mistakes, and do it a thousand times over. I will still be here, waiting for you, loving you, no matter what.”
So, I will keep practicing. I will keep falling and I will continue failing. I will get bumps and bruises on my already sore and burdened heart.
But that’s ok. Because this is my dress rehearsal. And I’m nowhere near opening night.