Thoughts of Fall

I was listening to the weather guy last night saying he knows that many of us are upset that summer is gone, but then reminded listeners that fall that is quite spectacular. I have to agree with him. Of course, it depends where you live. In the Northeast, we get to see all those incredible fall paintings by Nature-which are so spectacular that people from all over the country come to visit. If you’re thinking about coming, don’t wait too long or you may find that all of the B&Bs and hotels are booked. Do it now, and eliminate all the “woulda, coulda, shoulda’s,” which come up so often in my line of work. For instance…

Recently, while visiting my hometown where my mother is in the hospital, I got to talking to a childhood friend Sherri, whom my mother always called “my fourth daughter.” As all of us sat around, I mentioned that two years ago, Bonnie, the best friend of my sister Sherri (same name as “the fourth daughter”) from the age 2, had passed over at the age of 52. Sherri, “the fourth daughter,” broke down in tears sharing how sorry she was that she never went to California with Bonnie to visit my other sister Cindy. Woulda, coulda, shoulda.

Yes, I often hear this, almost on a daily basis: “I am so sorry that I didn’t [fill in the blank] while she [or he] was still alive.” So if you’re thinking maybe you should visit someone, give it real consideration. And if it feels right, don’t wait, do it now. If there is one key thing that I’ve had the honor and privilege of learning from my work with the DPs, it’s important to connect or re-connect with your loved ones while they are still here in the physical. So give it some thought. If you follow my advice, my take is that someday you will be thanking me. You might still be haunted by the idea that you didn’t do enough, but don’t beat yourself up over that one. Just “do it now” and you will recognize in the future that you did what you could when the time was at hand.

On a related note, a friend of mine who just lost his dear wife said quite insightfully that “You are never prepared even when you know it’s coming.” But he, like so many others who made the best use of time together, has in his heart all the words, times, and things they shared-moments that were and remain so precious. Memories of lifetime that you wish you could have back, and will have them back because you never lose what your heart feels.

Hold all those dear to you in your heart, and never forget that they will be there forever.

Before I sign off, let me not be remiss and instead mention that Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. This can be a wonderful memory for children, as they dress up as their favorite characters, heroes, and heroines. For those of you lucky enough to be in an area where the fall brings all those spectacular colored leaves, consider suggesting to your kids that they collect a few of those fantastic fall leaves and preserve them in between sheets of wax paper or ziplock bag. Just another way to keep a fond memory intact.