I’m like most people: I complain about all the things in my life that aren’t quite the way I want them. My sore back. The fact that I’m not a millionaire. The high taxes I pay. The many years remaining on my mortgage.

From time to time something happens in my life, though, that makes me “wake up” for a brief moment. I suddenly realize how good things are. I have a job, and a pretty nice house. I have a wife that I love, and furry critters around the house. I have enough money and time to enjoy some of the hobbies that interest me. I’ve got family I can still talk to, or even hug, even if I don’t do so often enough.

This is one of those times. I found out that I lost a relative over the weekend. Someone I haven’t really seen in years but who was of my age group and who I used to hang out with when I was a teenager. It seems so unfair, but in the grand scheme of things its not so unusual. People aren’t forever.

For me, right at the moment, I’m thinking a lot of the people in my life. About the folks still alive, and how easy it is to let them get distant. That’s a part of life, I guess. I suppose that if I had any words of wisdom, they would boil down to cliches you’d print on a greeting card. Even so, I feel this is worth saying: take advantage of those times you have to put an arm around a loved one. Those chances aren’t forever, either.

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