Pefect timing for this week's lesson
Thu, Apr 22 06:51 AM
How appropriate that this week should be about relationships. Tuesday (April 20th) was the anniversary of when my dad passed away...17 years ago. Please understand that I do not wallow in the sorrow every year (not anymore). It did take me a few years to get past that pain every year, but I decided very early on that every year on April 20th I would remember the loss I felt when my dad died. I remember it because the sadness of that day was increased by the fact that I'd spent a lot of years being angry with my dad for my perceptions of his failings. Notice that I say "my perceptions of his failings". Of course, my dad had shortcomings. We all do. But as an angry teenager and young adult I chose to focus on his shortcomings and lost sight of the simple fact that he was my dad. In reality none of those negative attributes would matter to me when he wasn't around anymore. I spent a lot of time after he was gone feeling terribly guilty that I had wasted all those years being angry with him. I got over the feelings of guilt by deciding that I would use that day as a reminder of the painful lesson I learned... Never take your loved ones for granted. We may think that we have a lot of time with them so we get lazy or we stay angry, thinking that we can "fix that tomorrow". Well sadly, sometimes tomorrow never comes. My dad was only 47 when he died of a heart attack. We never knew he wasn't healthy. He was gone before my step mom, who heard his groaning, could get across the house to him. It was that fast. So each year on April 20th I take a moment to remember how quickly life can pass. I take a second to remind myself how precious life is and how unimportant all those negative things are. Every person in my life brings great value to my life, no matter how imperfect they may be. I try to live my life so that if any one of my loved ones left this world tomorrow that I would feel confident that I had said all the loving things I'd wanted to and that I had not held onto any of the anger or pain. Life is to short to spend it doing anything less than loving those we choose to love.