Our guest this week on Know Normal People, Maria, offered up a short and hauntingly powerful question: How replaceable are you?

Does that question needle at your ego, like it does mine? If you’re anything like me, I apologize for this, but I just committed you to a few weeks of pondering your replaceability.

My gut screams, “I hope I’m not at all replaceable!” But I struggle to identify this as anything more than my own ego afraid of becoming small and insignificant. Maybe I should let it get small.

Would it be worth it to struggle through life, attempting to secure my irreplaceability, only to forget to live a meaningful life? Will I struggle too hard against the border of temporality that I forget I’m not chained inside a cell, but rather fenced in and secure inside a garden? No! Rather, I ought to open-handedly live in a meaningful way, letting the question of replaceability dissolve entirely, and thereby, possibly, accidentally, become irreplaceable to the people who matter most to me in the process.

“Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it.”