Do you remember in your childhood going to the variety store? My mother would give me 10 cents (this is 1968ish) and I would get a bag of salt and vinegar chips.
I could never make it home to eat, so I would sit on the concrete curb outside the store and the dance began. Rip the bag as fast as I could and literally devour the first half unconsciously. Not sure if it’s because I was hungry or that it tasted so good. I just needed to eat them as quickly as I could. I just kept chewing and chewing until…uh oh, I only had a handful of chips left.
The last chips would be eaten slowly and every last crumb at the bottom would be picked up with my moist little finger, not wanting to waste a crumb. Then the lips would be licked so no trace of chips remained.
I recently read a poem by Mário de Andrade that gave me goosebumps. You see, I have a handful of chips left. The first fresh, new bag of chips has been opened and ¾’s eaten already and somehow I want to savour each last chip.
“I counted my years and discovered that I have less time to live going forward than I have lived until now.”
What a reminder to embrace, cherish and truly live each moment of our lives with passion, reflection and intensity.
In the last few months, I have had 3 dear friends lose one of their parents.
I am at a time in life where this is now not totally unexpected. These events took me back in time when I went to a funeral in my early 20s. I remember my dear father in law, Ray, who said something to me at a funeral that I understand now.
I said, “I am sorry Ray for your loss. Are you ok?”
Without skipping a beat he said, "This is our 5th funeral this month. It seems like we have more funerals than weddings now. I much prefer weddings..."
He was not being funny, just sharing his reality.
His reality is becoming my reality.
So much so, when I send my condolences…there is still a void in what to really say to each other.
As I was told a few funerals ago to not send flowers…I looked for something to send or give and this is when I came across something I wanted to share. As I googled what to say to someone when they lose a loved one, I came across a book, "The beauty of what remains" by Steve Leder.
This was to be a gift for others but it turned out to be a gift for me, that I wish to share with you.
He shared with us from his own life experiences that the purpose of death is to live life as fully as we possibly can.
If others see you savouring every moment of your life, they just might follow. Let’s lead by example.
In life we learn, but also in death.
The timing of reading this book was a powerful reminder. It's about sharing our journey together and savouring EVERY bite. From the moment you open the bag, not just when you get to the end.