Voices

Embrace life more fully

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The tragedy of three young lives lost in a horrific house fire on Johnson Street this past weekend should be a wake-up call to all of us on the fleeting fragility of life.

By all accounts, the three twentysomethings were wonderful people with bright futures ahead of them when what looks to be a simple accident ended their journey far too soon.

The fire department is still investigating the blaze, but preliminary results seem to suggest that a couch on the front porch had caught fire during a party. The fire was doused, but unseen cinders erupted again later in the night when everyone was asleep.

The sad truth is, accidents can happen to any of us at any time. And while we can’t live in fear, we do need to find ways to embrace life more fully while we’re able.

It’s far too easy to get stuck in the mud worrying about debt and bills and never getting to go on that vacation you promised yourself because “things are just too tight right now.”

It’s also easy to spend too much time stressing about work or the boss or the assignment that’s due next week and next month and . . . well, you get the idea.

And while stress is part of earning a living, it’s far too easy to let it eat up more time than it deserves.

Instead of stressing this weekend, why not plan some quality family time instead? Kick off your shoes and go for a walk with your loved ones. Explore the wonderful parts of this city that you’ve been too busy for, treat your family to one of our fabulous restaurants, or head up to the mountains for a day on the slopes.

Kiss your family. Laugh with your friends. Rediscover those horrific dance moves that only your wife can appreciate.

Sing in the shower. Who cares if you don’t know the words. Stop and smell the sea air. Watch the hummingbirds and be amazed at their speed. Feed the ducks and watch the peacocks strut. Savour a spot of tea.

Remember, work feeds your belly, but family feeds your soul.

And before you leave the house, apartment or condo, take one extra minute today to check your smoke detectors. Show your children how they work, explain why they’re important and make sure they have fresh batteries. Kiss your family again and enjoy your day — together. M

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