Life Lessons

I was back home recently taking care of my 99 year old Mother when I was reminded of a few life lessons. One life lesson that has always been drilled in to us was that family is everything. When everyone else is gone, family is still there to support and love you no matter what. As my Mother talked about her childhood, I realized once again how the simple things in life are the things that we should cherish most. My Mother grew up in a great neighborhood and had many childhood friends, but little money in her family of nine kids. She had more fun over the years with those friends and those friendship went on in to adulthood. Friends are important and should be treated accordingly. Food was there way of showing hospitality and love. Being from an Italian family, when people came over they were offered more food than you can imagine. The coffee pot was on all day as a welcome to who ever was there. I am not referring to overeating, but making people feel welcome with the simple act of a cup of coffee or a meal. We can be happy without a lot of money. Enough money to pay the bills is important, but often my grandparents didn’t even have that. They had a garden and the tinniest house you can imagine. Three of the girls slept vertically on their bed and three of the boys did like wise. Three bedrooms and one bathroom for ten of them. To them, the house was wonderful and a gift from God. The lesson is we should be thankful for what we have and not focus only on what we want. The next lesson is that Health is everything. One of my Aunts was born with Osteogenesis imperefecta (brittle bones disease). Over the years she broke many bones and required care from her family. At 18 years old she got braces for her legs so she could get around and she did just that, but not without a few more breaks over the years. I never saw that Aunt feel sorry for herself, she embraced life and always had a smile on her face. She eventually married and traveled places she never even dreamed of. Finally, be kind to your neighbor and be there if they need you because you may need them someday. Knowing all your neighbors today is rare,, but during my Mother’s era and mine growing up we knew the neighbors and everyone looked out for everyone else. How nice would be if that was the case today. These are lessons you have heard before I am sure, but worth another go around I believe.

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