Monday, January 23, 2006

24 Lessons


All right, all right--you forced it out of me... During Tom's convalescence after surgery, he and I have become addicted to yet another tv series on dvd. This time it is Keifer Sutherland's show, 24. (If I confessed just how many episodes we watched last week, I'd lose all your respect. So don't even think about asking.)

Wow. Talk about a show so-intense-that-you-have-to-close-your-eyes-a-lot! You have to be courageous to watch this one and you certainly can't let yourself get too attached to any of the main characters. Why not? Because just as you do start really caring about one of them, he/she gets killed in the line of duty. Tom and I sit there practically stressed-out-of-our-minds, squealing things like, "Look behind you! Run!," "No! Don't walk into that dark room alone!," "Oh no! He's going to get killed, I just know it!," "Wait for back-up! Wait for back-up!" And then there's one I repeat over and over when the stress reaches its peak or my current favorite character lies on the ground, dying, "Remember, Debra-- it's only a tv show... it's only a tv show. The actor is still alive in real-life."

Yes, it's that intense. If the typical romantic comedy is about all you can handle, 24 is definitely not the show for you.

Anyway... Yesterday we watched the 5th disc of season 3 and .... (Starting here, I'll be sharing a big spoiler in case you'd like to wait and watch it yourself...............................................)

...it showed a deadly virus being released by terrorists into the air ducts of a large motel in Los Angeles. The hundreds of guests were held at the motel by force by C.T.U. to keep the virus from spreading throughout the city to thousands more people. Within two hours, some of the people began dying terrible, painful deaths. If you came down with any of the symptoms, your death was immanent and guaranteed. Later in the show, tablets were provided for anyone with symptoms who wanted to take them--anyone who wanted, instead, to die painlessly, as though just falling asleep.

Like I said.... this show can be intense.

Well, anyway... I am the holder of the dvd remote in our house and I have been known, on occasion (ok, I do it all the time)to pause the dvd and offer Tom my commentary on what we have just witnessed. And last night as we watched the people dying in that motel, I told him, "Wow. Watching this makes me, more than ever, determined to live each regular old day without regrets. It reminds me to not waste my days complaining, nagging or worrying. Instead, I want to live fully and awake and ready for the end whenever it may come, even if it were to come like what we're watching now."

Today I want to live peacefully and like the adult I am supposed to be by now. Not concerned with petty things people are saying about me.... not going around with hurt feelings.... not dreading what may happen tomorrow... not crying about yesterday... not feeling offended if things said to me are not said just perfectly... not worried, not afraid, not unhappy.

...not gripping this life so tightly that I cannot release it gracefully, and without panic, when the time comes...

Instead, just glad to be alive on this one day, Today. Just glad to know God and to know, too, that someday I'll be living an even sweeter life than this one, in a whole other place.


***
One today is worth two tomorrows. ~ Benjamin Franklin

The preciousness of every moment is emphasized with every tick of the clock. Isn’t it a magnificent day today? ~ Bel Kaufman

This is the day the Lord had made. We will rejoice and be glad in it. ~ Psalm 118:24

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