Three years ago we got a call. A call that we were far from ready to receive, but the phone rang anyway and our lives were about to change forever. The call was to tell us that dad had collapsed and that it didn’t look good. We hurriedly threw what we thought to be necessities in a bag and drove down to Stanthorpe. It is usually a very long drive at the best of times, but that day the drive seemed much longer. As we reached Warrick the phone rang again. This time it was my brother letting me know that dad had passed. I had missed the opportunity to say goodbye. The adrenal drugs hadn’t helped dad, he was too far gone.
Since dad’s death in 2010, we all head out to Stanthorpe each year for a weekend of family togetherness. Its a great excuse to get together, and now that all three of us have our own children, Dad and Lone’s home becomes a noisy, and chaotic haven for the weekend, but it’s also a wonderful time of being together. Family is about being connected to each other as siblings, but also with our Aunt (dads sister) and Dads wife – who we have a wonderful relationship with (and who is NOT a nasty wicked step parent). It’s sad that Dad is not here physically, but he is constantly in our thoughts, and spoken about. His death has caused us to realize how important it is to NOT take each other for granted. We need to make sure our relationships with one another are of high importance to our lives. Successful relationships seem to be based on the ‘Don’t sweat the small stuff’ mentality.
This blog post is about cliff hangers in our lives. Cliff hangers can be both positive or negative. It obviously depends on the circumstance or situation, but its also all about how you see the cliff hanger. My dad’s death was a big cliff hanger in our lives. Dad was 59 when he died, and while this shocked us to the core, it has forced my brothers and myself to get real and get serious about our health, but also about life goals and where we want to go and what we want to do in our lives. We aren’t kids anymore, and dad dying before he should have reminds us that life is far too short – Again, I will say it – ‘Don’t sweat the small stuff!’
I have been umming and arghing about this blog post a lot over the last few days. Specifically since its been a week since dad’s actual anniversary, and we have just spent a lovely weekend in the country with all the family. I don’t want to over analyse and drive myself nor my readers crazy with my antics, but I think over the last few days, I have been reminded that not only is life is short, but every decision I make today has some impact on my tomorrow. We all live in a cause and effect world. Some decisions can be considered cliff hanging decisions as they are large and will affect our lives on many levels, but other decisions are small. Whether you call it a decision or a cliff hanger – there is still an action needing attention.
Like any story – we are all on a journey. The journey is our lives. Each decision directs us and prods us to some type of action needing attention in the story, and the question always asked is how are we going to deal with it? How are we going to respond? What action will we take? Remember that while we are trying to live our long, successful, family friendly, happy, fun filled lives its important to remember that life happens to us while we are making plans. And if we sweat the small stuff – we are probably going to have a much shorter, unhappier life, so remember ‘Don’t stress the small stuff’.