We are told many times over the course of our existence that life is short. Whether it's from our parents, our mentors or the self-help books we repost inspiring quotes from to our Instagram stories, it's safe to say the sentiment is drilled into us often.
We nod and accept this truth but when do we really understand the weight of it? When someone too young is taken from our world by a series of uncontrollable circumstances? When a child is diagnosed with an untreatable disease? When an unrecognized individual feels compelled to open fire on our schools, offices, and places of worship? When an entire nation is brought to its knees by a ruthless dictator?
I think too often when something tragic happens or when we lose a family member, friend or any loved one for that matter, we go through a period where we ask ourselves why we didn't show our appreciation for them more. We resent ourselves and commit to forever harboring the feeling that we deserve one more conversation to say everything we left unsaid.
Today I call on you to understand that truth in the present. Don't wait for something awful to occur to tell the people dearest to you that you love them. That they infinitesimally make your life more worth living. That without them, you'd have one less reason to get out of bed and fight the demons that haunt us all.
Don't feel embarrassed about telling the friend or loved one on your mind that you're missing them. Text them now, call them this afternoon. You don't have to be dating someone or romantically involved to say I love you. When your mom calls you this week, don't let the call end without saying how she's the best fucking mom in the world.
I have a friend who whenever I say goodbye to, I say "Be safe, I love you." He would often times remark that its silly to always say I love you that way when we depart. He figures, of course we know we love each other, why say it? What I once expressed to him in return (which basically changed his whole perspective) was that I can never really be certain that I'll see him again, so why not just ensure he knows?
Okay, maybe you think that thought process is a little morbid, but so what? It also happens to be pretty true. Life can be taken away in an instant, regardless of how much we think healthy eating and exercise and whatever other methods of hyper-healthy living exist that I'm not hip to convince us that death is controllable.
Life is fleeting, but love transcends it all. If you're blessed enough to be surrounded by people who care about you, let them know how much you appreciate it. We should not only acknowledge that yes life is short and death is inevitable, but we should use that knowledge to propel ourselves to stop and smell the flowers more often and share that joy with the ones we love.