IT’S EASY. Writing this blog, sitting out looking at the reflection in the still waters on this golden pond, might make you consider, for just a moment, life is good. It is.
Just saw a quote from poet Emily Dickinson: “That it will never come again, makes life so sweet.” Words like those definitely make you pause to consider making every moment, every day, and every thing you do… count. This is not a dress rehearsal for something bigger, it’s the real thing. So if you don’t do it now, or at least take a shot at doing it now, you won’t get to do it later. Because at some point later will arrive. The last thing you want to do is pile up a life of would have, could have and should have.
Just yesterday I was in attendance at yet another funeral. It’s been a three-week run of saying farewells I am not looking to repeat. I will say this however, amongst these endings of life, I have gleaned some of life’s greatest lessons. I have learned how each person is so different, how they lived their lives was so different, but how each person had a gift to give, and they got to do it, albeit some of them losing the privilege of giving that gift, much too soon.
Yesterday it was to honor Louis D’Eugenio, the father Andi & Dean D’Eugenio, stepfather of Annmarie Dickerson. I have known Andi and Dean for quite some time, especially Andi, who has been a life long friend to my wife Debbie, the two having met years ago, in elementary school. I met the “big man” several times and what I remember most is his big smile, and bigger personality. He was a proud Italian who had a long career in real estate, but his passion was his music and he made sure he used that passion to fuel his gift, playing the saxophone.
“Louie Dee”, as they called him, played that sax for 40 years, and it resulted in his induction into the Maryland Hall of Fame for Musicians. Talk about taking your talent to the next level. It is inspiring. I can’t imagine anytime Louie Dee picked up his sax and put it to his lips, he could have a bad day. No, life was good. Because Louie was doing what he loved, and found a way to create a relationship with those listening, through the magic of his music. As Father Stan, the Pastor at yesterday’s Mass repeated, give… get back, give… get back, give… get back.
Then the Pastor told a story we can all relate to, whether you can play music or not. Father Stan said Louie loved to eat, loved his Italian food. That’s easy to understand, but then the Pastor said something that has stayed with me, about food, relationships and love: “More hearts are changed around the dinner table, than any other place.” I believe he’s right. I think about how important it is to have dinner with my own family, to sit down around the around the table and have some bonding time. Or during the holidays, or for special occasions, where food is central, because it brings families together and hopefully hearts are lifted by reinforcing some of our most important relationships.
Yes, there’s inspiration in the world in front of me, as I soak in the beauty of nature, and inspiration from people, now behind me, but whose lessons of life will stay with me. I am learning no one is perfect, but each person I knew, and then got to know a little bit better by hearing stories from their lives, makes me realize they fit perfectly into this world, when they found their gift to give. That’s what makes life sweet.
La Dolce Vita, Louie Dee.
Until next time, thanks for taking the time.