It is a really tough question to think about. It is an even tougher one to try and explain, at least to me it is. I like to think that I have always loved my loved ones in a way that if tomorrow never came, they would at least know that I loved all of them unconditionally. No exceptions. No regrets. I like to think about the song by Tim McGraw, “Live like You Were Dying”-jumping out of a perfectly good plane just to go skydiving. Now that might be for some people, but I am scared of heights and am quite certain I would die of fright on the way down. But I am forced to ask myself if I really am living like I am dying? Are You? As we all watch the tragedy that unfolds in our country and around the globe, I am reminded that nothing is certain. A really good friend of my wife’s was killed instantly as she was driving to work on a major route in our area and a car that was traveling in the opposite direction crossed the grass median and hit her head on. She died instantly. I wonder if she told her husband that morning that she loved him. I wonder about her son who happened to be home on leave from the military at the time. I do know that she had that night’s dinner pulled out of the freezer for a barbeque. I do know that when she left for work that morning she planned on returning to celebrate her son’s birthday. I know that she was one of the very best artists that I ever had the privilege of seeing. She was funny, extremely funny- one of those people that would leave you with your sides hurting from laughing the whole time she was there. I miss her Jersey accent and her ability to turn every frown upside down. I do know, at least to me, she had a lot more living to do. Every time we hear of a story like that we always say “you just never know”, and they are right. The question that really demands an answer is if they were living like they were dying? And an even better question is to ask yourself if you are living like you are dying. We, the people that are here are talked about in the present tense, whereas the ones who’s time has run out here on earth, are viewed in the past tense. There is still time for us to change our lifestyle so that we can be described at our funeral like this, Wow, they really lived every single day to the fullest, was happy and had righted their wrongs and had no regrets. They lived like they were dying. There are millions of people from every walk of life that are sincerely trying to live life in a way that is pleasing to their God, their family, and their friends. They go out of their way to help strangers in time of need. I wonder though, how many of those same millions are still somewhat timid about getting involved to help out? I know for a fact that I am one of them, and that I need to start doing more. Perhaps I need to check in on the elderly in town, or give them a ride to the store so that they can get groceries? Maybe I could just… visit. I think if all of us agreed to helping just one person a week, they would in turn help one person and so on, good will be re-born. Patience is really big. If we all learned to be more patient with the length of the coffee line, the traffic, or the price of gas we would solve many of the worlds problems right away. Seriously, people would get a better cup of coffee, maybe listen to a talk show on the radio while stuck in traffic, and not gripe about the price of gas because there is absolutely nothing that is going to be accomplished by yelling, cursing and waving with one finger. I’m a realist and know that this is a far cry from ever happening, but if we all started thinking like that then maybe real change is possible. Learn to take things, life, in stride. Learn to chill out and give yourself some “you” time every day. Leave work at work and when you get home you put on the other hat and become that happy, more relaxed, well versed, and kind person that is hiding in there. Live life to the fullest. Agree to change for the better by making plans with your loved ones. Start by being happier, while at the same time living like you are dying. It will make a difference.