By Sabrina Roblin
I live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country and as I was driving down the road the other day, I realized I was rushing from one thing to the next, not seeing the incredible beauty of the mountains around me. I expanded my vision beyond the black top in front of the car and drank in the white snow capped mountains, the blue sky, and the magical light reflecting off the snow. I drew a deep breath and immediately felt my heart open to the beauty and the feeling of gratitude. I felt so much better. Now that I’m in the second half of life, I feel that every day is a bonus that deserves to be cherished, and yet I still at times forget. I had a surprising reminder recently. I received news about a girlfriend in her mid-sixties who I hadn’t talked to in a while. She was perfectly healthy and engaged in a life she enjoyed. She had dinner with a friend, went home to bed and passed away in her sleep. She was found the next day and her death was a shock to all who knew her both because of the loss and the realization that it could have been me.
Death is a topic we avoid in our culture and in the second half of life, it’s certainly closer than it used to be. Why am I bringing up the topic of death? None of us like to be reminded of it. But if we acknowledge it, it sharpens our focus, brings us present, calls us to cherish life, and inspires us to act on a dream rather than wait in our comfort zone. It reminds us to tell our loved ones how we feel about them, to resolve conflicts and extend forgiveness.
So wake up each day and savor it through the joy of the senses – the vision of a beautiful landscape, the sound of birdsong, the smile and touch of a loved one, the laughter of children, the taste of a good meal, the smell of a rose, the physicality of exercise. Don’t wait to create a life you love. It’s never too late to start and time is precious.
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