Be prepared to die at any time

It sounds morbid but it seems justified these days. Be prepared to die at any time.

I woke up in the middle of the night and the TV was still on a news channel. I saw the sad news that it happened again. A mass murder. This time at a California-area nightclub.

Notice I referred to it as sad and not surprising. The reality is, it really can happen any time. Death could be 30 years from now or it could be in an hour. That’s nothing new. I could live a long life and die of cancer when I’m 90 or I could be hit by a bus this afternoon.

But it almost seems like nowadays there are way more chances for me to die — and it’s not the obvious things like stepping into oncoming traffic, skydiving with a malfunctioning parachute. It’s everyday stuff like, you know, going to school, or a nightclub, or church. Back in the day these weren’t places you would likely die (unless of a medical emergency, I realize that).

Not that I want to go through life thinking the end is near but there are a lot of sayings to reinforce that thought. Live each day as if it were your last. Live in the moment. Life is short. You’ve heard these before.

It’s sad to think that in today’s world there’s so much turmoil and hate that your life could be over. It’s one thing to think positively and believe you will die of old age, it’s another to second-guess yourself going to a concert or a baseball game or a house of worship.

This isn’t a rant about gun control or mental health or any sort of political commentary.

In all honesty, when I’m at the mall or at an event – it sounds self-centred – but I’m focused on my enjoyment and what I’m doing and who I’m with. I’m not concerned about what others are doing around me. I go about my business and live in the moment — my moment.

Do I need to change that though? Do I need to be looking around suspiciously at others and surveying the scene before I get comfortable? Do I need to be checking for the nearest exit and planning ahead for an escape? I don’t think so. Well, I don’t want to, but should I? Is that the smart thing to do these days?

We hear that we shouldn’t live in fear because when we do the terrorists win. Unfortunately, no matter what our attitude, they will strike again and again and again. Really, they are winning no matter how I mentally view the situation. They’re killing people. That’s their goal. Their goal isn’t to have me living in fear. Their goal is to kill me. That’s how they win.

I’ve come to the realization that I can plan for tomorrow but it shouldn’t be my focus. Perhaps I look forward to tomorrow with the understanding that it just might not come.

Sad to think that carrying on about my daily life could kill me. But, what are ya gonna do?

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