Life is full of so much that you refuse to let yourself experience. The blanketing comfort of love, the fulfillment of contagious laughter, the peace of finding true joy, the butterflies of uncontainable excitement…these are all things that make up life. They should never be taken for granted.
Buddhism is not a refuge from life. It is life stripped bare and known most intimately. Zen doesn't make you a "better person." It helps you become fully human. My mentor was no model for how to behave perfectly but for how to experience completely. He never told me how to live my life. He just helped me become alive.
Life can be full of dark times, and things that knock us off our feet, but there are good times, too, and gifts along the way. It would be wrong to turn our backs on a gift just because we've been knocked down once or twice, or because some of the people we love aren't here anymore.