As per my routine, I wake up at 5:15am and wipe the sleep from my eyes . I get ready to hop in the shower, and as soon as I turn the water on I realize that the water heater has decided it would not be cooperating with me. A quick, brisk shower later; suited and booted, I head out the door for my 40 minute morning commute. With the sun still yet to rise, I arrive at work a few minutes before the market opens and begin reading through my emails.
Reading from the bottom up, I find a message from our Director addressed to us all about 4:15pm - long after most people have left for the day - asking us to pray for a co-worker who was in the hospital after having a heart-attack over the weekend in Boston while taking a walk around his hotel. Apparently (and luckily) an off duty police officer witnessed him fall to the ground and immediately began administering CPR. When he got to the hospital, and all tests had been done, he was scheduled for a quadruple bypass surgery to be administered late last night.
I took a moment to think about how crazy it was to come out of the blue like that, and how lucky we all truly are to make it through each day. I wished for all the best to him and his family, and went back to my emails. *Note: I'm not one to pray for myself, but if it's to help someone else, I generally figure it can't hurt.
About 3 emails later (and 3 hours time wise last night), there was another email from one of the man's sons (the man and his two son's all worked together at our office). It stated simply and quite sadly, something to the effect of: "Dad is looking down on us, telling us to party, and saying GOOOOOOO BEARS!"
Apparently, having heard of his scheduled surgery, he elected to push it back a day so that his daughter who was flying in from Hong Kong would be able to see him before he went under the knife. As it turned out, he hung on just long enough to see her and say goodbye, before passing away.
And I was irritated about having to take a cold shower this morning...Fuck.
I'm sure you are wondering how this is related to a blog called 1000awesomethings. Right? Well, Awesome Thing #347 is titled "Laughs at a Funeral," and from everything I know about the man who passed away, there is little he would have loved to see more at his service, than everyone out having a good time, cheers-ing him and remembering him for the joy he brought others.
Why am I telling you this? Why am I ruining your perfectly good evening with sad stories of people you don't know? Simple. We are all susceptible to this sort of thing. Not saying we'll all have heart attacks, but that we are all running a race against the clock. Some of us have more sand in our hourglass than others do, but nevertheless, the fact remains that we are all going down. Everyone around us is going down, too.
So, while you head into the final stretch of Holiday shopping, crammed freeways, packed flights, and overall anxiety, do me a favor: take a breath and realize everything you have. Not your bank account, or your clothes, or your house, or your car, or that shitty material gift you're giving someone that will more than likely end up regifted or in the back of a closet. These things won't remember you when you're gone. Think about your family, friends, and loved ones. These will be the ones reminiscing about the good times, laughing about the inside jokes you had, partying in your honor, and crying because you're not there to see it all.
As taken from the site:
"People, it’s sad but it’s true: nothing’s gonna stop your big final drop. So live it up now, live it up large, because at the end of the day you aren’t really in charge. Look, we’re not spinning, gninnips, spinning on this wet rock for long, so let’s all enjoy singing our songs with big days full of belly laughs, loving moments, and late nights with close friends."