Last week, I got a call from my father. I thought it would be our typical light- hearted daily calls, talking about our big plans for the week, me venting if I have a crazy workload (which unfortunately happens to be often), and hearing about how my dad played in his tennis match the previous night.
But, this call was different. I could tell from the moment my father said hello that it was not his usual excited and enthusiastic greeting. This time he had a stern, deep tone of voice, which was very, very rare, as he is the happiest most positive person I know.
I remember my heart began to race and palms were getting sweaty. I jumped right up from my chair, with all my work spread out on the table, consisting of a ton of flashcards for my presentation coming up in the next twenty minutes for my communication's class. I didn't even think about asking someone to look after my things because I was so nervous about what I was about to hear. A few minutes later, i could not believe the words he told me. I was in absolute disbelief.
Flash back to last summer, I worked for my dad in his search firm, as an Internet Technology Recruiter. It was an amazing experience. Most of the people I worked with were way older than i am, so I was like the 'baby' of the team, which I am used to being since I am the baby of my family. It was nice though because I got to work with people wiser, more knowledgeable, and way more experienced than I am.
The man sitting across from me, Jeffrey, was a class act. He had a great sense of humor, a laugh that was contagious and in which you could hear from miles away, and was a self- motivated man. I remember how impressed I was with him when I began working there. He made so many calls each day I could not even keep track of how many. He never seemed to be tired of his job.
Jeffrey's wife died from cancer, which I learned a month into the job, but he came to work each day with a good attitude and smile. That is something to be praised for.
Hearing that Jeffrey passed away just last week, the day after going to his mother's grave to grieve the anniversary of her death, was absolutely heartbreaking. I had absolutely no words. My phone almost slipped through my fingers. I was in disbelief.
I have not stopped thinking about Jeffrey ever since that phone call with my father. No one knows why he has died, yet. He was a healthy and athletic man. He ran practically every day which is incredible for someone in their 60s.
Anyways, I'm not telling this story to receive any unsolicited attention or sympathy, but to remind everyone to treat life like a gift. When you want to tell someone "I love you" but are too scared, just do it. If you want to go ask someone out on a date but you're scared of being rejected, just do it. If you want to go skydiving, just do it.
Life is too short. Replace feelings of fear and anger, with love and confidence.
To Jeffrey, your motivation and contagious laugh will live in my memory forever.