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chasing answers newsletter #73
We're so fucking lucky
“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” - Marcus Aurelius
This weekend, I attended a family birthday party. Also at the party was my cousin’s little boy. He’s four years old and a spitting image of his dad. I’ve never seen a father-son resemblance so striking.
My cousin became a father at the age of thirty-two. He was proud and the happiest I had ever seen him. He had experienced some struggles in life, but things seemed to be looking up for him. I was beyond happy for him. We talked about how incredible it was to be a dad and how much we both enjoyed it. I thought it was the best thing that could’ve happened to him.
Four months after his son came into this world, my cousin was taken out of it. He was killed in a car wreck on Labor Day weekend four years ago.
He was nine years younger than me. I held him as a baby. Thirty-two years later, I carried him to his final resting place. Usually, when you are my age or younger, the people around you who die are those you’ve never known the world without, not those you can remember coming into it. When you have witnessed the entire span of someone's life, it makes you acutely aware of just how short life is.
As I watched his son run and play at the birthday party, I thought about how proud he would be of him. I thought about all the things he has missed out on over the past four years and everything he will miss out on throughout his son’s life.
Then I looked at my daughter running and playing, and all I could think about was how fortunate I am to be here. How happy I am to have the opportunity to come home each night and lie in bed and read with her. And all the amazing things I've experienced in the six and a half years since she was born.
In short, it made me realize how lucky I am.
If you’re reading this, you’re lucky too.
Photo(s) of the Week
My favorite tree on our property. A large maple whose branches feel as though they stretch out forever.
I hope you all have a great week!
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