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It’s only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth — and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up, we will then begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had. ~Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

It’s been long since I wrote. One gets so busy that sometimes one forgets to follow one’s passion. And since I write from my heart I need some incident to motivate me to write.

Yesterday while watching on TLC ‘I am not going to survive’ wherein they show how some people fight death being so close to it, it leaves a lump in your throat.

After Mom’s death, life’s like a big vacuum. Now one can understand the eternal connection of an umbilical chord which is taken so casually sometimes.

I just started reflecting that suppose today was the last day for me what are the things I would do because it is said if you want to be happy live each day as if it is your last and I truly believe in it.

I was surrounded by a multitude of questions and if indeed today is the last day then prioritizing what is important. It seemed like a Herculean task.

Would I go to work but I must go because how would I know whether they’ll miss me or not. Which friends would I call up because if I decided to call all that will take my entire day. What would I wear as I must look good since people would remember my last day, On my God how can I forget my family, my husband, my children, my sister, my brother-in-law, my aunts, uncles, my niece her kids, my nephew. I’ll have to call all of them up and tell them how much I love each one of them. I must go also for the hair Spa/ facial/ pedicure… I must complete all the pending work. Clean my cupboards… Clean my work desk as I would not want anyone to say that it is so unkempt. I would want everything to look perfect. Oh God!!! I must say sorry to that aunty who lives below my house for the mess my children created.

I have to make fudge for Karan, Tanya and their friends otherwise they’ll get upset as I promised them. Oh My god how would I crush the biscuits as I will have to get the mixer repaired but that fellow won’t give me in a day even if I tell him it’s my last day . He will probably think I am mad.

I have to reply to so many mails. The list is becoming endless. So many things to do… I had to go shopping with Tanya as I want to buy her that beautiful dress she liked… Karan’s new shoes, I have been watching that ad of yummy biscuits I need to eat them before I go… I must make my husband’s favorite dish… have to eat the HCF from Nirula’s… and so the list goes on and on.

But, wait. This is nor funny… I am getting numb as we take life each day so casually without ever thinking that maybe today can be the last day.

We all have just one life to live. We don’t know how long we will be here, but it won’t be forever. I think that makes time even more valuable. How we spend it matters. I love the song If Today Was Your Last Day by Nickelback that encourages us to appreciate each day as a gift and to consider what choices we would make today if tomorrow were too late.

My dad loved life. I recall how grateful he was for the simplest things. He would walk the stretch from Nehru Place to Vasant Kunj because he loved to walk, loved to observe, enjoy… He was very happy and blessed. My dad always had a passion and gratitude for life and an ability to live one day at a time with complete faith and trust that tomorrow would be a better day. He was thankful for each day and tried to make the best of it.

There is nothing more unsettling as having regret over words left unspoken or deeds left undone. Did you ever wish you faced the fear and took the risk? Did you ever wish you told someone you loved them? Asked for forgiveness? How about letting go of the past or the anger that robbed your peace of mind and ability to live fully? Or how about taking the chances you had to help and change someone’s life for the better? I especially like this line in the song: Every second counts ’cause there’s no second try. So live like you’ll never live it twice. As long as you are still here, it is not too late to make good choices and live each day fully.

If today was your last day, what would you do? Are there words you have left unsaid? Do you want to tell someone that he or she is important to you? Is there someone you would call, someone who needs to hear you love him/her? Is there someone you would release and forgive? Can someone’s life be changed because you can make a positive difference? Do you have something you can give that can help someone in need? If your answer is yes to any of the above, I encourage you to do it now. Tomorrow may be too late. Time does not wait for us. Let us seize our opportunities while we still have them. Let us say what is in our hearts and do what we know we ought to do. Our decisions today can impact eternity for ourselves and for others.

Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it I say!! Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows. ~Pope Paul VI

Shalini Nambiar
Excelsior American School