At your deepest level, what do you most want to know in your lifetime?
I want to know what the meaning of life is.
I want to know why we are here.
I want to know if everything happens for a reason.
I want to know if God and Heaven really exist.
I want to know if God has a plan for us and/or what happens in our lives is mostly random.
I want to know why bad things happen to good people.
I want to know why some people are really nice and others not so much.
I want to know why some people don’t seem to like me, despite my efforts to be nice to them.
I want to know why I was blessed and lucky enough to be born into my family and grow up where I did.
I want to know why certain people have been a part of my life for only a short time and yet they made such a significant impact on me and who I am today.
I want to know how my husband and I ended up together, when we are not at all whom either of us would have imagined we would marry and spend the rest of our lives with.
I want to know why it is easier for some people to conceive and sustain pregnancies than others.
I want to know why my family and I experienced secondary infertility.
I want to know why some babies die before or soon after they are born.
I want to know why Sean and Abby survived and our other babies, including Molly, did not.
I want to know why some people are born with special needs.
I want to know why some people have cancer and many of those people die.
I want to know why some people have mental illnesses.
I want to know why some people struggle with addictions.
I want to know why so many people don’t know or see how much they are loved and appreciated by others.
I want to know why some people choose to take their own lives and how they are able to go through with it.
I want to know why I have been able to find so much good in the midst of pain and suffering over the years.
I want to know that I will continue to love and be loved, to care and be cared for, to teach and to learn, to mentor and to grow, as well as to strive to be a better person every day for the rest of my life.
Whatever the answers to these questions are and regardless of if I might someday find out (though I have hunches and theories about many of them), I do my best to make the most of the gifts I have been given in this lifetime.
One of my favorite quotes, by Erma Bombeck, summarizes how I feel about my life and the legacy I hope to leave:
“When I stand before God at the end of my life I would hope that I would have not a single bit of talent left and could say, `I used everything you gave me.’”
What do you most want to know?
Kathy Benson is a bereaved and blessed mom, writer and group fitness instructor trying to live mindfully and find joy in the journey after dealing with secondary infertility and loss for five years. She lives in Chicago, Illinois with her husband and two living children.