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BODY MIND SPIRIT: October 2021


My grandmother Clemetine had a twin, Clem. Clem had a son, also named Clem. My cousin, Clem #2, was a pilot in WWII and during that war his plane was shot down. Thank goodness he lived!
However, his co-pilot was killed in that crash, and this of course was a great loss to him. He would speak about it now and then over the years.

Clem had many adventures during his long life. He saved a woman from a burning building and this woman later became his wife. He had a beautiful family with three children and spent his
civilian years as a cargo pilot traveling to exotic places. Later in his life, he became a door-to-door postman; a route he walked year after year until he retired.

He knew what true loss was, because his eldest son died unexpectedly at a relatively young age.
This beautiful being, my cousin Clem, passed away peacefully in his sleep this year at the age of 96. We had communicated frequently by phone and email through the years and among the many messages he sent, I want to share parts of this one with you. Whether these are his words originally, I do not know. But the message conveyed is worth sharing and was very much how he felt about life.

This email from him is from 2009:

Too many people put off something that brings them joy just because they haven’t thought about it, don’t have it on their schedule, didn’t know it was coming, or are too rigid to depart from their routine.

How often have your kids dropped in to talk and sat in silence while you watched ‘Jeopardy’ on television?
Because Americans cram so much into their lives, we tend to schedule our headaches. We live on a sparse diet of promises we make to ourselves when all the conditions are perfect!

We’ll go back and visit the grandparents when we get Steve toilet-trained.
We’ll entertain when we replace the living room carpet. We’ll go on a second honeymoon when we get two more kids out of college.

Life has a way of accelerating as we get older. The days get shorter, and the list of promises to ourselves gets longer. One morning we awaken, and all we have to show for our lives is a litany of ‘i’m going to…’ ‘I plan on…’ and ‘Someday, when things are settled down a bit…’

Now… go on and have a nice day. Do something you WANT to… not some- thing on your SHOULD DO list. If you were going to die soon and had only one phone call you could make, who would you call and what would you say? And why are you waiting?

Have you ever watched kids playing on a merry-go-round? Or listened to the rain lapping on the ground?
Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight or gazed at the sun into the fading night?

Do you run through each day on the fly?

  • When you ask “How are you?” do you hear the reply?
  • When the day is done, do you lie in your bed with the next hundred chores running through your head?
  • Ever told your child, “We’ll do it tomorrow.” And in your haste, not see his sorrow?
  • Ever lost touch? Let a good friend- ship die? Just call and say “Hi.”
  • When you worry and hurry through your day, It is like an unopened gift thrown away.
  • Life is not a race. Take it slower. Hear the music before the song is over.