It’s Always Time to Celebrate Life

Funerals are always sobering events. Of late, even more so for me. It’s probably due to my turning 65 in August. OMG where has the time gone? But that’s a story for another day.

Yesterday, I attended the funeral of my son-in-law’s grandmother. It was a very nice service as one would expect for a woman who had lived a good life and was quite loved. Heartfelt words were spoken. There was sadness in the room, but more so for a dearly departed great-grandmother, grandmother, mom, aunt and friend and the memories rather than for a tragic passing.

As the spoken words settled in and as the last person to share his thoughts returned to his seat, music and a video started as a celebration of life. The video appeared to follow a chronological order from a young age to marriage to becoming a grandmother and then, a great-grandmother. Truly, it was a beautiful tribute.

What got me at this point was seeing my grandchildren’s faces on the screen, and my daughter’s, as well. It felt surreal. Certainly, as they are my son-in-law’s family, of course they would be part of the tribute. But what was really surreal is that I started to think about their faces on the screen at my own funeral. I found myself lost in thought as I visualized the faces of my other grandchildren, my other children, my wife, friends…

This funeral was sobering as it was intended. For me, it was even more sobering as my emotions ran wild, and well into the evening long after we left the service. I started running things through my mind much like I did when I was choking on a piece of bacon some ten years ago. I remember quite vividly, just before my great friend, Stan Friedman and one of his co-workers came to my rescue, my life was flashing in front of me at warp speed.

Eerily, based upon the timing, in yesterday’s Facebook Memories was a quote from Steve Jobs with my own thoughts that I had shared on several occasions over the years.

I wrote, “It seems there have been many recent events where a loved one has passed – whether it be in the family of a friend, that of a colleague or even hitting home in my own family, death has a way of stopping us in our tracks and makes us think, ponder, reflect… What if it were me? Which, of course stimulates the thoughts of what else do I want to do while still alive? What have I missed in my life? What have I put off, thinking there’s plenty of time to get it done? What should I do differently now and in the future? Yes, death makes one think, and in my case, it also had me reflecting upon the following quote by Steve Jobs and specifically, to “have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.””

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

As things continued to run rapidly through my mind, I started to shift back to current times and the challenges ahead of us. Especially, as I had just read that the GDP Report signals the U.S. is in recession. I immediately reverted back to feeling old, that is until I came across (again, eerily) a quote that I had saved on my phone.

As I do every morning, I share an inspirational or motivational quote with each of my two daughters. I always try to choose a quote based upon things they may be going through in their lives. As such, they typically receive different quotes.

I strive to make sure the quotes are the first things they see each morning. Unable to do so the night before because they do drift off to sleep at different times and with their devices close by, I try to time sending the texts around 3AM. Certainly, I don’t want to miss sending the quotes, so I have saved quite a few quotes that I have found in my daily activities online. Choosing the appropriate ones, I have the quotes for the next morning all set so that when I wake up in the middle of the night, as I do most every night, I just hit send.

Truth be told, I look forward to receiving a heart or thumbs up as they see their quotes. As they do so immediately upon waking up, I know when they’ve started their day. I know I’m part of their morning which as we know is a new beginning each and every day.

Anyway, back to the quote I came across last night:

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This morning my eyes are wide open and I’m ready to move forward. I’m committed to helping others face current challenges amidst economic uncertainty. I’m also committed to accelerating several projects we’ve been working on here at Acceler8Success Group.

I may have a lot of years behind me, but I believe the best is yet to come. After all, I’m alive and as such, despite challenges, life is good. There’s no time to wallow in regret. Certainly, nothing will get done if being positive is not the word and action of the day. Yes, life is good. However, it is what we make it, right?

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!