At any moment, anywhere we can be told anything, that can shake what we believe in and what we feel, how we establish our values and truths, and what our reality really is.

Last night after going through a rather long coughing fit and churning up some rather delicious green phlegm. I decided I felt really shit.

Then I received two text messages. One from someone who said that they couldn’t live another moment, as their suffering in life was too great. The other a relative who was currently in hospital, fighting for their life after having a stroke.

To the first I said; start living and did you really do something you needed to do today? To the other; I sent my well wishes and looked forward to the updates. Both sent me into panic.

I wanted to be more involved with the latter, but people need their own space. In the first I wanted to help, but realise that I am not alone in wanting to be altruistic. Nor am I the only person who can help.

As I sat there in another coughing fit, I decided there and then that I needed to look after myself. I was immediately motivated to cook myself a lush dinner.

I may have had brain fog whilst cooking, leading to a soggy bottomed Salmon Wellington, but I made the effort. I got off my sorry ass and did something.

Compassion is so much more than caring; it’s about being honest and taking action. It’s about recognising we need to take care of ourselves and share our feelings with others. it’s about recognising we are not alone.

I then did something that felt cruel; to the first text I blocked the person. They had been asking money from me for a while, and I just felt that I didn’t want a relationship based on donations in my life. Not because the person wasn’t worth it, but because for all the emotions they could share, I wasn’t the only one that could help. I’m not the person making decisions in this persons life.

I’m also not in a place to always be of service and help. I’m am not the only source of help. I am not all wisdom. I am not all help. I’d be arrogant to think so.

Instead, between the two situations I found myself reflecting. In the constant battle for life and death. For all the moments when everything, anything could change. What is the one thing I will do to live right now. And what’s really important?