Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.
Another birthday passed overnight, leaving me in a contemplative mood. I was reminded of what a friend told me long ago, when I was pregnant with my second daughter and filled with doubts about my abilities and worthiness as a parent. She believed that before they were born, our children picked who they wanted to be their mother. This was a reassuring concept in one way, and it gave me a warm feeling to think that maybe my daughters had chosen me. It was more arduous for me to apply that concept to myself. Had I really decided to pick someone with a severe mental illness to be my mother? Why would I have chosen someone who faced so many obstacles that she was unable to hug me or tell me she loved me? There is no way to know whether such a concept is true. It is one of those fairy tales that we chose to believe in order to comfort ourselves, and therein lies its value.
All I can say now is that I do not regret all of the blessings I have had as a result of being born into this family, and I would not trade places with anyone.