The power of an unexpected “time out.”

“Well, there’s definitely something in there. Not exactly a lump — more like a defined ridge.
Could be pseudoangiomatous stromal hyperplasia. Could be nothing. Could be … something we need to be concerned about. Let’s keep an eye on it for a month, and see if it gets bigger. Then we’ll decide where to go, from there.”

Not exactly what you want to hear coming from the lips of your breast health specialist.

I’ll fast-forward & tell you: I’m healthy. It wasn’t cancer. Thank God.

This isn’t a story about lumps & bumps & modern medicine.

It’s a story about what happens when life hands you an unexpected Time Out.

Time Outs come in many shapes and spiritual flavors: A hurricane that knocks out a city grid. A canceled flight that catapults you into limbo-land. A health scare that overshadows the daily minutia. A tumble down the stairs. A broken bone. A broken heart.

Some Time Outs shatter us. Others force us to take stock and reflect.

Sometimes they simply invite us to be still.

And often, they reveal what we really need, what we don’t, what we take for granted, and how we are intrinsically connected to the people around us. So fragile. So dependent. So human.

I’ve been on a Time Out this week — recuperating from an excisional biopsy that (happily) provided some very good news.

I’ve gone about my business — writing, tweeting, conversing, invoicing, planning & creating — but it’s been different. It’s felt different. A little quieter. A little gentler. A little sadder. A little sweeter.

I’m pretty damn clear about what matters to me, but it took a Time Out — a scary one, at that — to remind me that no matter how vigilantly & enthusiastically I go about completing my Great Work In The World, the timing — and ending — is not up to me. Never was. And never will be.

And so, knowing that every day is our first, we go on.

Knowing that every day is our last, we go on.

Knowing that we know nothing, we wait for the next Time Out … to teach us the next lesson.

And we hope we learn it well.