Here we go in full grumpy northern bloke mode. If you are faint of heart or of a nervous disposition then leave now.
The photo of this sunset above is one I took at sea in the centre of the volcano in Santorini, Greece which I was fortunate enough to witness with Ann my wife whilst it was happening.
Afterwards when we were having a drink and talking about the events of the day we both discovered that in all our years on this planet that was the first time either of us had ever watched the sun set mainly because we never found the time.
So that got me to thinking. I have come to the conclussion that life is for living, every hour, minute and second. You should never ever, ever stop living in the moment and thinking that you are in control of your life. You aren’t it’s an illusion.
We are insignificant at the hands of chance and sometimes life can be cruel. I can assure you that life can take a random turn at any moment without notice and sometimes the consequences can be horrific. The good news is that if you survive you learn a valuable lesson, in that it’s not how we react to these events but how we recover from them and what we learn.
Twenty years ago I was diagnosed with cancer of the small intestine which by some miracle I recovered, not without certain lifestyle changes. Now if you want to lose weight then this is the way to go but I can assure you that you don’t want to even think of what you have to go through to get a diagnosis let alone a cure!
After eleven weeks in hospital and an operation or two later I discovered that life is indeed precious. I now savour very minute, which includes taking time to watch the sunset (I am to lazy to watch the sunrise).
So to this day every morning I wake up and count my blessings, if all my vital bits are working then I am quids in already. But that is was makes life so exciting and now and again I think about what I could have missed.
I would have missed my grand children growing up which believe it or not is enjoyable beyond belief and they keep me young (mainly because I can teach them very bad habits) and I would also have missed a couple of really good holidays but that’s for another day.
So I have this advice to give to you modern parents who are struggling with life at the moment.
I know you are busy paying a mortgage, worrying about career progression, paying for technology and various school trips for the kids but please take this advice before you miss the best things in life.
- Live in the moment. Moments are what makes life worth living. A simple look from your partner that makes you feel loved is all it takes to make the world a better place even in your darkest days. So spend more time together!
- Never miss the opportunity to watch your kids do stuff no matter what it is, it is magical and once you miss it, it has gone. You have no rewind and at the very least it will make you feel proud.
- The most important lesson of all is that when you are on your deathbed in hospital you will never wish you had spent more time in the office. (the voice of a man who has been there)!
The real secret to life is very simple, you should love yourself, be kind to others less fortunate than yourself and never pass up the opportunity to carry out an act of random kindness. Which unfortunately means that you need to give strangers the benefit of the doubt but it does make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
I am very lucky, I am still here and being grumpy however my only hope is that my children and their children get to live the life I have had, have the same opportunities and have a happy and healthy life.
As an afterthought you should also take every opportunity to spend time with the old crumblies because it makes them feel as though they have achieved something in their lifetime (that is purely selfish on my part).