As the seconds tick away toward the arrival of the new year it causes most to pause and reflect on the past year since the last calendar change. To be sure every year brings challenges and with each passing day we find joy or sorrow as our lives unfold.
We lose friends and family members and we gain some as well through births or marriages. The circle of our family ebbs and flows like the tides but the common core remains intact for most.
I was sharing with my students a couple of weeks ago about the need to live each and every day with the idea that each day is a gift and that each day allots you 86,400 seconds with which to enjoy that time. You cannot save even one single second for another day. I use the example of being given $86,400 and being told you have one day to spend that money in any way you desire but you cannot save it and any unspent money would have to be returned.
Of course the money would be spent by most because there would be zero benefit in wasting the opportunity to spend what is there. So it is with life. Live that when your time is up there are no "would ofs," "could ofs," or "should ofs" which would be evidence of regrets.
I know many people in this area and by the calendar they are old but their attitude toward life defies their age. Yes, they have aged but they haven't grown old. They have robust attitudes and are still involved in learning, volunteering, hobbies, and in other people's lives. They know the joys of life and they seek those joys out constantly.
So as the New Year comes upon us and we make those resolutions to lose weight, attend a night class, or to be more organized, we really need to resolve to live each of those precious 86,400 seconds with vim and vigor so that we are not bored but exhausted when we go to sleep.
Our bodies rarely wear out but they do rust so we need to use those seconds wisely.
During the coming year this country will face many challenges. Some economic difficulties are certain to pop up and there will be threats to our national security. Politics will affect certain judgments and we will debate the issues. During this coming year we will enjoy our liberty guaranteed by the Constitution and enforced by our Veterans, we will see the benefits of millions of hours of time donated to charitable causes and billions of dollars sent to other charities. We will see advances in medicine and technology and we will see businesses come and go. That is what life is all about, the constant change that makes for an excitement that we cannot imagine.
Who knows, this may be the year that cancer is cured, polio is eradicated, and diabetes ceases to cause folks to have to take insulin. Perhaps this new year will be the year that sees record employment numbers, and a drop in people needing help from others to survive. Maybe in 2014 there will be a decline in dropouts from high school and that people will begin to see signs of hope in their life. Maybe at the end of 2014 people will look back and say that 2014 was certainly better than 2013. That would be icing on the cake.
Thank you for making this column a part of your life. Many agree with my thinking and many disagree with my thinking but you read my words and I hope they cause you to think.
May 2014 be a great year for all of you.
Happy New Year.