My brother-in-law shared this inspirational video of Pat Summitt, who recently retired as Head Coach of the Tennessee Lady Vols, due to her diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Now I’m not a basketball fan, and I don’t know much about Pat Summit other than what I’ve just learned, but I like her.
As you’ll see in the video, anyone who has the words “It Is What It Is” hung over their fireplace must be a straightforward, non-complaining, acceptor of reality kind of person.
I want to be like that. I strive to be like that.
“It Is What It Is” is a common saying with a big message. Simply put, I think it means “I accept reality.” Accepting reality can mean anything from accepting the traffic jam you’re in to accepting a job lay-off, or even accepting an Alzheimer’s diagnosis like Pat Summitt. But I want to take it a step further and say “It Is What It Is” can also mean agreeing with reality. Agreeing with and embracing reality, and even loving reality — or “Loving What Is” as Byron Katie, one of my favorite authors writes about when she says: “I am a lover of what is, not because I’m a spiritual person, but because it hurts when I argue with reality.”
The reality is life is hard, things don’t always go our way, and people get sick and die every day. Arguing with reality adds more pain to an already difficult circumstance. Accepting, embracing, and even loving reality leads to a path of less suffering and more peace.
It is what it is.
I have an art print that says this on my wall at home. It spoke to me while I was shopping a couple of months ago, I impulsively bought it, and it’s been tucked away and not hung up ever since. After learning about Pat Summitt, her brave acceptance of her Alzheimer’s disease, and that she lives by these words, I finally hung it up today. It will be my daily reminder to accept and LOVE WHAT IS — because what else is there?