I’m a person who likes to think. So naturally, I think a lot. And I often find myself replaying situations in my head: replaying how things used to be, or thinking of things that I wish I had said or done differently. I don’t think I’d necessarily call myself a “seize the day” type of person. I am thankful for the blessings that I am given and the people who I am surrounded by, but I definitely don’t live my life as though each day could possibly be my last.
I was driving to the calf ranch this morning & I was replaying some memories in my head. I thought of the night when my parents, my brother Austin, and I drove 1/2 a mile down the road to my grandparent’s house to sit in their jacuzzi. It was the night before my grandpa would be diagnosed with Acute Leukemia. Him and Grandma were sitting in the living room & Grandpa was talking about how he hoped he would still be able to run the 5k Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning, but his feet were hurting him so bad that he couldn’t even walk. And I remembered how I thought nothing of it because Grandpa probably just had a weird flu bug and he’d be better soon. Until we got the phone call the next night. And in that one phone call, all of our lives, especially Grandma & Grandpa’s changed in an instant.
And then I thought back to this past year. My friend lost her uncle when he accidentally backed into a propane tank & it exploded. He was going out for a morning of work on the farm, just like every other day. Who knew that in the blink of an eye, he would leave behind a wife and 5 kids, just doing work that he did every single day.
Or my brother’s best friend, Lance. Graduated from high school this past May & was looking forward to attending Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in the fall. The boys were planning on having an awesome summer before they all parted ways for college, but those plans changed so unexpectedly when a freak slip ‘n slide accident left Lance paralyzed. And in the second that Lance and another boy collided on the slip ‘n slide, the insanely athletic young man lost all ability to walk and to hold things in his hands, and to do everyday tasks that we all take for granted. (Side note: Lance has had some amazing improvements since the accident. Keep him & his family in your prayers, as well, please. You can also search for “Lance VanGrouw” on carepages.com to read about how he’s doing.)
And most recently, for those in the Social Media world, the death of Chris Raines (@iTweetMeat), the 29-year-old advocate for agriculture. Although I’ve never met Chris, it is evident that he touched the lives of many agriculture and non-agriculture people. I don’t think I’ve ever read so many blogs & tweets before, from people wishing they had thanked him for what he did and who he was to agriculture & social media.
So, my thought process in all of this is probably similar to those of you who have experienced some sort of crisis moment such as the ones mentioned above. Our lives, here on this earth, are not ours. As much as we want them to be, sometimes! Our lives can change in a moment. a second. an instant. And it’s so important that we don’t take any of it for granted. The people in our lives, the jobs we are placed in, the talents that we are given-don’t under appreciate any of it! If someone’s had an impact in your life, tell them. If you love someone, tell them.
Usually I hear older people say something along the lines of, “I’m just thankful that God allowed me to wake up today.” Usually, they mean it with great sincerity, too. I want to live my life taking nothing for granted & enjoying every moment of life that God blesses me with here on this earth. I challenge you to do the same.