“The trouble is, you think you have time.” – Buddha
Why are we so determined to hold on to unspoken words until it’s too late!
We do it all the time! Why … Because as Buddha so aptly stated “We think we have time”. Yet … we don’t, we deal with constant reminders every day of how short life really is. Last week was the 2nd Year anniversary of the death of my friend, Ilse. It hurts because of all the pain left behind when she passed, not just because she was barely 30 when she died, or the fact that her death was very sudden and unexpected, but also because of the words left unspoken. There is so much I would have loved to say to her.
“I doubt very much whether my friend truly knew just how loved She really was” …
When it was time to say goodbye at her funeral, I saw people who were not just grieving the loss of someone they loved, but they were hurting because there were too many words left unspoken, “unfinished” business”, no opportunity to right any wrongs or try to make peace before such a tragedy struck. As I chatted to her family and friends, the main question they asked that struck me, was whether she knew what she meant to them. I probably had many opportunities to tell her what she meant to me, yet I didn’t take them all. Instead, I could only tell her in her eulogy, which she will never get to hear. I know that I showed her what she meant to me with the way I treated her while she was with us, but it is something else when someone you care about actually takes the time to tell you to your face.
”Be a best friend, tell the truth and over use “I LOVE YOU”!”
So what if you tell someone 100 times a day that you love them if that’s what you feel, it’s better than missing even one chance to say it. What really matters when it involves the people you love the most? Why are people only ready to forgive, let go, and finally say what they feel when someone dies or moves away and the moment has passed? Why let petty arguments or mistakes grow into lifelong grudges and miss out on friends and family while they are still here and we have the opportunity to share moments with them that we will never get again.
“Time is the second most precious gift we have; the most valuable gift is life itself. What we do with the time we have is what determines the legacy of the life we live” …
One of my favourite songs is “Leave out all the rest – Lincoln Park”, it really does get the message across and makes you ask yourself … What am I leaving when I’m done here? The verse I love the most is … “So if you’re asking me I want you to know. When my time comes, forget the wrong that I’ve done. Help me leave behind some reasons to be missed, and don’t resent me when you’re feeling empty keep me in your memory … Leave out all the rest”
“I’m strong on the surface, not all the way through, I’ve never been perfect, but neither have you” …
The reality is that we will make mistakes, hurt the ones we love, and do things we are not proud of but that’s life! … How we react to it is what matters. Live life simply and stick to the basic principles of life that we have grown up with. Don’t leave your loved ones without a kiss goodbye and a kind word. Try not to end the day with unresolved arguments, swallow your pride, accept the apology you are probably not going to get anyway and decide what’s more important … Do you need to be right, or do you want to do what’s right? When it’s your time, it’s your time, we don’t know when that is and we can’t do anything to change it either, our paths are already mapped.
“Time is precious, waste it wisely” …
Celebrate your life and the ones in it, regardless of your life’s journey, this is your life and only you can determine the legacy you leave behind once you’re gone. I want my loved ones to remember me with laughter and love in their hearts. I want them to giggle at this girl who wouldn’t shut up, suffered from verbal diarrhea, but there was no question as to how she felt about life, and everything in it, especially the ones she loved. I want to teach my son that regardless of what a person does that may hurt you, what matters is who and what that person is to you … leave out all the rest.
“The strange thing about life is how we learn our greatest lessons when it’s too late.”
May you always find the courage within to express your feelings, not later, but now, before it is too late. Sometimes all you have is one moment, one chance, and you have no choice but to take it.