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- [Henry Amman] The moment I found out my mother had cancer, just turned my world upside down. She was my best friend. And what I learned in that journey taught me how to find peace in difficult times and taught me how to be empowered in times where I felt powerless. And I wanna show you how to do the same thing. I remember being in the doctor's office when the doctor calls me, and it felt like the movies where he is like, "Can you come into my office, please?" And he's like, "Your mom has cancer and it's not looking good." And at that moment, of course, all these emotions just flood through my body. My mind is spinning like a slot machine, and I just have all these feelings. And my sister was on her way to the hospital. She didn't even know. And I had to tell my sister. And three years before that, we lost our father. I remember just thinking, and I just took a deep breath, and I paused. At that moment, what popped in my head was the serenity prayer. God, grant me this serenity, the peace, to accept the things that I cannot change, the courage to change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. And as soon as my sister came in, I remember just telling her, "Hey, we can't control what's happening to mom, I can't control her diagnosis, but what I can control is how we show up for her, how I show up for her." The journey was tough, the journey was up and down. And we had moments where there were difficulty, and I would just drive, and I was feeling all these emotions, crying for hours and come back in, take a deep breath, and show up for her. And there were moments where we had these beautiful moments together. On the morning of my birthday, someone got me a present. I took the the bow and I wrapped it around my head, went on my mom's bed, and I woke her up, and I put my face right next to hers, and she opens her eyes, she sees me, starts cracking up. And it was one of the best moments. And then four days later, I'm sitting at her bedside and I'm holding her hand, and my mother passed away. And of course, again, all those feelings come in. That was my best friend. She was everything to me. My mind was spinning and I was angry, and sad, and shocked, and kind of frozen all at the same time. At that moment, I remember just taking a pause. I took a deep breath and I connected. As I did that, a metaphor came into my heart, in my mind. And it was something I'd heard about the carrot, the egg, and the teabag. There's three pots of boiling water. And in the first one, you put a carrot; and the second one, you put a egg; and the third one, you put a teabag. And after 10 minutes, you take out the carrot and what happens to it? It's melted, it's soft. After 10 minutes, you take out the egg, and what happens to it? It's hardened. And after 10 minutes, you take out the teabag. And what happened? In that water, the water looks different, it smells different, it tastes different. All the good qualities of that teabag have gone into the water. At that moment, I realized I had a decision to make. I could be the carrot. I could be the egg and be hardened for the rest of my life. I could be that teabag and just make a decision to extract all the goodness from the situation that I could. And don't get me wrong, it was difficult. But I remember looking at my mother, I looked at her and I said, "Mom, I will honor your life with how I live mine." And that one decision changed the trajectory of my life. 'Cause I really think I would've been so bitter and upset the rest of my life because of what I experienced for the previous year. But that one decision changed it. I realized what the important part of that whole moment for me that allowed me to change that moment is what I call the Sacred Pause. So what I want you to do for a moment is now just take a deep breath and think of one thing in your life that's hard, that's difficult. And you honor your feelings. You honor the situation. You can check in and say, "Okay, what are the things that I cannot change?" And I'll honor those things, and I'll let myself feel them. But also honoring, "What are the things that I can?" You bring higher source, love, presence, whatever it is, you take a deep breath. And in the things that I could, it's asking, "What decision can I make to bring more love into this situation, to bring more presence, and to move me forward to get into healing quicker?" I invite you to take the first step in honoring that decision. And you'll get better at this the more you practice it. These sacred pauses, for me, have changed my life. And I look back at my situation with my mother and if I didn't pause in that moment, I wouldn't be sitting in front of you. I wouldn't have gone out and made the difference I made in the world. But every moment in my life, because I paused now with that choice, I decided to honor my mother with everything I do. In life, we're gonna go through trials, and there's certain things that we cannot control. And so if you're gonna go through it, you might as well grow through it.
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