Opportunities are like sunrises. If you wait too long, you miss them.
William Arthur Ward
Yesterday I attended a Senior Health Fair that was organized by a good friend of mine. Some of the folks I talked to while there I already knew but most I did not. I enjoyed talking to a number of people while there, some like me were there to learn others were there offering their help within their area of specialty.
Almost everyone I met had a positive attitude and I found most shared my belief that we have the capacity to make the best of everyday. It seems as we get up in years most of us realize how precious each new twenty-four hours can be if we are willing to fill the time with action versus just sitting letting each day slip by.
When I came home I pulled up the following story that reminded me that too many of us wait until it is too late to enjoy all that life has to offer.
Take Hold of Every Moment
by Author Unknown
A friend of mine opened his wife’s underwear drawer and picked up a silk paper wrapped package: “This, – he said – isn’t any ordinary package.” He unwrapped the box and stared at both the silk paper and the box. “She got this the first time we went to New York, 8 or 9 years ago. She has never put it on. She was saving it for a special occasion.
Well, I guess this is it. He got near the bed and placed the gift box next to the other clothing he was taking to the funeral house, his wife had just died. He turned to me and said: “Never save something for a special occasion. Every day in your life is a special occasion”.
I still think those words changed my life. Now I read more and clean less. I sit on the porch without worrying about anything. I spend more time with my family, and less at work. I understood that life should be a source of experience to be lived up to, not survived through. I no longer keep anything. I use crystal glasses every day. I’ll wear new clothes to go to the supermarket, if i feel like it. I don’t save my special perfume for special occasions, I use it whenever I want to. The words “Someday…” and “One Day…” are fading away from my dictionary. If it’s worth seeing, listening or doing, I want to see, listen or do it now.
I don’t know what my friend’s wife would have done if she knew she wouldn’t be there the next morning, this nobody can tell. I think she might have called her relatives and closest friends. She might call old friends to make peace over past quarrels. I’d like to think she would go out for Chinese, her favorite food. It’s these small things that I would regret not doing, if I knew my time had come. I would regret it, because I would no longer see the friends I would meet, letters… letters that i wanted to write “One of this days”. I would regret and feel sad, because I didn’t say to my brothers and sons, not times enough at least, how much I love them.
Now, I try not to delay, postpone or keep anything that could bring laughter and joy into our lives. And, on each morning, I say to myself that this could be a special day. Each day, each hour, each minute, is special.
Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.
Only a Mother (take my word for it, Grandmothers too).
Can listen to the same knock-knock joke 27 times without hollering “Nobody’s Home.”
Will unwind 56 feet of toilet paper so her little darling can have the empty roll…to make a Mother’s Day present.
Will try to hide a leafy green vegetable in a cookie.
Knows the secret to happy grocery shopping with a toddler…visit the bakery aisle first and plug his lips with a big cream horn.
Sees a Picasso in those scribbles decorating the fridge.
Can find her last good pair of panty hose hitching a wagon to a tricycle.
Knows the sure-fire way to get three kids to eat carrots… buy two carrots.
Invests fifty dollars in stale macaroons to help send the French Club to Disneyland.
Can switch from cook to catcher in an instant.
Has a bathtub that’s filled with little yellow duckies.
Seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.
This is not a novel to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown away with great force.
A very proper lady began planning a week’s camping vacation for her church group. She wrote to a campground for reservations. She wanted to make sure that the campground was fully equipped and modern, but couldn’t bring herself to write the word “toilet” in her letter. So, she decided on the old-fashioned term “Bathroom Commode.” Once written down she still wasn’t comfortable. Finally, she decided on the abbreviation “B.C.” and wrote, “Does your campground have its own “B.C.?”
When the campground owner received the letter, he couldn’t figure out what she meant by “B.C.” He showed it to several of the campers, one of whom suggested the lady was obviously referring to a Baptist Church. So he sent this reply:
The B.C. is located nine miles from the campground in a beautiful grove of trees. I admit it is quite a distance if you are in the habit of going regularly. No doubt you will be pleased to know that it will seat 350 people at one time, and it is open on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday of each week. Some folks like to take their lunch and make a day of it, especially on Thursday when there is organ accompaniment. The acoustics are very good, so everyone can hear even the quietest passages. It may interest you to know that my daughter met her husband there. We are also having a fund-raiser to purchase new seats, as the old ones have holes in them. Unfortunately, my wife is ill and has not been able to attend regularly. It’s been a good six months since she last went. It pains her very much not to be able to go more often. As we grow older, it seems to be more of an effort, especially in cold weather. Perhaps I could accompany you the first time you go, sit with you, and introduce you to all the other folks who will be there. I look forward to your visit. We offer a very friendly campground.
“After Mama gave birth to 12 of us kids, we put her up on a pedestal. It was mostly to keep Daddy away from her.”
The crumbling, old church building needed remodeling, so the preacher made an impassioned appeal, looking directly at the richest man in town. At the end of the message, the rich man stood up and announced, “Pastor, I will contribute $1,000.”
Just then, plaster fell from the ceiling and struck the rich man on the shoulder. He promptly stood again and shouted, “Pastor, I will increase my donation to $5,000.”
Before he could sit back down, plaster fell on him again, and again he virtually screamed, “Pastor, I will double my last pledge.”
He sat down, and an larger chunk of plaster fell hitting him on the head. He stood once more and hollered, “Pastor, I will give $20,000!”
This prompted a deacon to shout, “Hit him again, Lord! Hit him again!”
Learn to enjoy every minute of your life. Be happy now. Don’t wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future. Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it’s at work or with your family. Every minute should be enjoyed and savored.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
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