As the Days grow Shorter...
Posted Tuesday, February 21, 2012 09:59 AM


Thanks to Ken Biggs:
As the days grow shorter and we get closer to the 50th South Gate High
Reunion Party, in order to get those who are still undecided to come,
have them read this:
These were the thoughts of people who are near to dying.
We have a lot in common; we all grew up in the same city as the same
time and expereince all the world events at the same age and are faced
with many of the same challenges as we grow older.
1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the
life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their
life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how
many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a
half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices
they had made, or not made. It is very important to try and honour at
least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose
your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise,
until they no longer have it.
2. I wish I didn't work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their
children's youth and their partner's companionship. Women also spoke of
this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the
female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed
deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a
work existence. By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious
choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you
think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become
happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new
3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with
others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never
became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses
relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result. We
cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may
initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in
the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level.
Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life.
Either way, you win.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my high school friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends
until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them
down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let
golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets
about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved.
Everyone misses their friends when they are dying. It is common for
anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are
faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall
away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if
possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance
for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those
they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage
this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end.
That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end
that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and
habits. The so-called 'comfort' of familiarity overflowed into their
emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them
pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When
deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their
life again.
When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way
from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long
before you are dying. Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose
consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.

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