This past week I received a phone call that a dear family member, Lorraine Perdeck, passed away. She was my great aunt and such a lovely, caring individual. Aunt Lorraine was married to my grandfather’s brother and was the last relative from his generation. She touched the hearts of all who knew her and always made you feel special even if you were a total stranger.
It saddened me because, although this is part of the natural cycle of life, my grandparents are the last ones in our family from this generation. It made me reflect on my life, and how I have parents, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, etc., who I would go to for advice, love or whatever, and that as you age and build your own family, all of a sudden those same people are coming to you in a way.
I asked my grandfather about this and he said, in a very emotional way, “There are times it’s difficult to say, ‘I’d like to phone my mother or my brother to ask advice.’ It’s very difficult because at this age, the decisions you make, the way you conduct yourself and other things sometimes require help. Once you make your decision to do something, either it will have repercussions or it will be accepted very wonderfully.”
I’m not trying to set a somber mood, and there is a reason why I am bringing this up. I wanted to tell this story because I think its crucial that you know how important it is to embrace your family. Family comes first. Don’t take life for granted and don’t take people for granted.
My Aunt Lorraine lived a long life, and made a positive impact on so many people. Now I know some people just aren’t cut out to be positive, or aren’t caring or giving by nature, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t change. Try to be a good person and make an impact on other people’s lives because, in the end, that is what people will remember.
Make an effort to be with family, and if time or money is stopping you, make a phone call or send a card. I was fortunate that I was able to make time to attend Aunt Loraine’s funeral in Florida. Upon entering the funeral home I noticed a packed room of family and friends from various states. It was a great feeling to see so many people making the effort to pay their respects to someone so special, and to know there was an abundance of support in the room. As people, we need to know that our friends and family are in our corner and that they care. Make the effort to reach out to someone and to be there for someone; that gesture goes a long way and people will never forget it.
After the services and the burial we all went back to my cousin’s house. While it was a sad time, we were able to share a laugh and be supportive of one another. My grandmother, Mom-mom, said, “It was a great celebration of life. It was very consoling, people were laughing, there was a lot of humanity. Our family has great moral support.” My grandfather added, “It teaches you what you have now, because when it’s gone you only have the memories. The happiness comes when you think of the kindness, the caring, and thoughtfulness of someone.” Then Mom-mom hit the nail on the head when she said, “All it is, in the final analysis, is the human relationships we form.”
Our relationships with our families, friends, co-workers and others in our lives are so important. Accept people for who they are and leave a good impression on them. Form bonds and cherish moments. Let people know how much you care and treasure your memories.
An unknown author wrote: “When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.”
Whitney is an on-air multimedia personality, and works behind the scenes helping businesses gain extra exposure, through her WIN Promotions video production services.