Because Everyone Has Something, There are Life Lessons to Pass on To Our Grandchildren

grandchildrenGreat Grandmother (GG) Frieda, My Mother, a Holocaust survivor, who was taught Kabbalah by her Father, a Rabbi in the small shtetl (town) of Bransczczyk, Poland, had sayings she passed on to me. “Everyone has something.  Life is hard and then you die.”  She said, “Live every day as if it were your last day of life, as you never know if it is your last.”

When one lives long enough, one realizes that everyone has something.  That something can be an illness or a family member with an illness.  That something can be safety or financial difficulty that causes angst and worry. That something can be the death and loss of a loved one.  That something can be just anything that causes stress to one’s life.

Everyone has something.  We see it when we can sense sadness in a stranger on the street, when someone is mean or unthinking, when someone is distracted, angry, by their actions or inaction.   That something can affect how they act, how they speak, and how they present to you and those around them.

GG Frieda’s sayings can be seen as life is depressing and not worth living.  However, this Grandma, always the optimist, sees the message as different.  We humans must expect challenges in life.  It is not about how others act toward you in life.  It is how you act that is important.  It is how you live your life that is important.

PopPop and I just came from the funeral of a wonderful, forty-eight year young, woman with everything to live for, a devoted husband, three beautiful children, a warm and close family, many loyal friends, a successful career, but death took her early.  She lived life 110%, putting more hours in every day than there were hours in the day.  It was as if she knew she would be taken early.  In her chambers, this outstanding judge hung a prayer reportedly written on the wall of Mother Teresa’s home for children in Calcutta, India, and widely quoted and, some say, attributed to her. Because everyone has something, it is not how others behave that is the measure of one’s life.  How YOU live your life is a measure of the person you are and the person you become. There are life lessons for our grandchildren in this prayer:

“Do It Anyway”

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered,

Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;

Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;

Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;

Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;

Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;

Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;

Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;

Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;

It was never between you and them anyway.

Everyone has something.  You will too.  Remember kindness toward others as each one has something they are dealing with in this life.  Live life with kindness and understanding that everyone with whom you come in contact has something.

We never know when we will be taken from this life.  We never know if today is our last day on earth.  Life is shorter than you think.  As a grandparent, we learn how fast time goes by.  Give life 110% as this young, vibrant woman did.

I honor this wonderful young woman’s memory with passing along the life lessons that she lived by to us all, following the lead of Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

Dear precious grandchildren, please pay attention to how you live your life. Live life to the fullest.  Be grateful for each day of life.*  Life IS worth living with

 

 

Joy,

 

Mema

 

*See post, “2018 New Year’s Resolutions Focusing on Feelings That Span A Lifetime Will Bring Us Joy”

2018 New Year’s Resolutions Focusing on Feelings That Span A Lifetime Will Bring Us Joy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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