I have many regrets that came too late over loved ones whom I have lost. I remember at 17 years old, not going to the hospital when my Grandpa was sick because I was out with my friends instead. Friends who have since faded from my life and honestly were not worth my time and certainly not worth missing time with my Grandpa, whom I adored. Although I lost my Grandpa over a year after that, missing visiting him at the hospital sticks in my mind.
When regret pops into my head, I shift my mind to treasured memories and unforgettable moments. The regret that I had over not seeing my Grandpa in hospital made me focus on spending valuable time with my Grannies. I made sure to spend every single moment I could with both of my Grannies. I spent hours listening to their stories and ensuring that my son had a relationship with both of my Grannies, his Great Grannies. I have learned not to focus on the times I missed with those I loved and lost (for that in itself is a waste of time), but rather to focus on the beautiful memories and meaningful moments shared with wonderful people who will never be forgotten.
I think about people who I am lucky enough to have their foot prints imprinted in my heart and I can see every feature on their faces and even smell the way that they smelled. My friend’s little boy got into her car after I had been in it on Tuesday and said “Mommy I smell Aunty Lisa”. Remembering the way my Grandpa smelled and being able to smell him reminds me of the bond we shared and love I had for him. The true blessing of this kind of pure love is something that one cannot buy. I am mindful of the people I love, and I do try to make time for them, although I often fall short by being consumed with the hustle and bustle of modern life.
On Tuesday I posted a photograph on Facebook with my cousin, my dad’s brother’s son and when my dad didn’t recognise him, it brought a tear to my eye. Life can be hectic and I know that I get distracted by the busyness in my life and what is on my plate and I often don’t see family and friends when I really should be making time for people who I value.
Tomorrow is not promised, life can be taken at any moment and any one of my loved ones could be taken away from me in a minute. When my time comes, and the sun sets on my life what do I want to remember? Timeless moments with the people I love and hold dear to me or wasting time and energy on things that I won’t remember or value at the end of my life’s day.
Time is more valuable than gold because it is the only thing that you cannot get back. No one gets to choose when their time to leave this world comes.
Harvey MacKay, who is a well-known columnist, businessman and writer, said:
“Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back.”
Even the richest of men cannot buy time. No president, King or the most famous of celebrities can get time back. Time is the most valuable yet the most wasted commodity.
Everywhere I go, I watch people staring at their phones and playing games on them. Messaging people or interacting on social media but not interacting face to face has become the “norm”. I have sat opposite a couple at a restaurant on more than one occasion having dinner with each other, yet both, eyes glued to their phones and seemingly forgetting that they are in fact in each others company. Sitting face to face with loved ones, staring at phones, iPads or television sets instead of conversing and enjoying one another’s company. I am just as guilty of this, so I am not placing any blame on anyone. I am sure that at least two of my ex boyfriends will say that I spent more time on my phone than with them. Shame on me!
Time is always missed once it has gone. How many times have I wanted to say something important but been distracted by something completely irrelevant? I will be forty in a couple of years and I don’t even want to think about how much time I have wasted in my lifetime, how many moments I have let pass me by and how many meaningful things I have left unsaid and undone.
I recently came across the thought-provoking quote:
“If you want to know the value of one year, just ask a student who failed a course.
If you want to know the value of one month, ask a mother who gave birth to a premature baby.
If you want to know the value of one hour, ask the lovers waiting to meet.
If you want to know the value of one minute, ask the person who just missed the bus.
If you want to know the value of one second, ask the person who just escaped death in a car accident.
And if you want to know the value of one-hundredth of a second, ask the athlete who won a silver medal in the Olympics.”
How many years, months, hours, minutes and seconds are we allowing to slip through our fingers on irrelevant and unnecessary people and things? What will I remember when my life is at its end? I would like to remember the good times shared with significant people in my life and forget the rubbish in between.
The events of this week, reminded me to be mindful of how I spend my time and to make time for the people who matter to me. It is too late, when they are gone.
The time is now, and it will wait for no one!