Michael is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and has something positive to say. When someone asks how he is doing, his reply is: “If I were any better, I would be twins.” “How do you manage to remain positive all the time?: I asked. “Every morning when I wake up, I tell myself that I have two choices. I can choose to be in a good mood, or, I can choose to be in a bad mood and I always choose the former. When something bad occurs, I can choose to be a victim or – I can choose to learn from that experience. I choose to learn from it. When someone complains, I have two choices. I can accept their complaints, or … I can point out the positive side of life, which is what I choose to do.’
Several years later, I heard that Michael had been involved in a serious accident that required 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care. He was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back. I asked him what had gone through his mind after the accident and he told me that he had thought of the well-being of his soon to be born daughter. “Then” he continued, “as I lay on the ground, i remembered that I had two choices. I could choose to live, or, I could choose to die. I chose to live.”
“Weren’t you scared?” I asked. Michael continued. “The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine but when they wheeled me into the ER and I saw their faces, I got scared. The expression in their eyes was; ‘He’s a dead man.’ “What did you do?” I asked. “Well, when a nurse asked whether I was allergic to anything, I said yes. The doctors and nurses stopped working and waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled; “GRAVITY.’ Over their laughter, I told them “I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, and not dead!”
MORAL OF THE STORY: Michael lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors but also because of his attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully.
After all, today is the tomorrow that you worried about yesterday.
Life is about the little choices we make every single day.