There’s no time like the present

Last week, I turned 46 years old and my kids offered up a delicious home-cooked dinner, followed by a sweet dose of unexpected reality.

Last week, I turned 46 years old and my kids offered up a delicious home-cooked dinner, followed by a sweet dose of unexpected reality.

“I wish I was you,” my nine-year-old daughter said as we enjoyed our decadent dessert. “But I’m kind of glad that I’m not.”

“Why are you glad that you’re not?” I asked.

“Because your life is half over,” my 12-year-old son chimed in from across the table.

“It kind of is, Mom,” Daisy agreed, nodding sympathetically. “No offence.”

Sure. None taken.

Eager to know more about her first statement, I asked Daisy why she wished she were me.

“Because you have an amazing life!” she replied.

“And you look less old than you actually are,” Sam added, smiling.

I was glad they thought I looked young for 46, but the fact remained that they thought I was old. Duh. Of course they did. I remember being my daughter’s age and thinking my mom was ancient too. She was 27 at the time.

I explained to my children that I planned on living to be at least 100 and that I hadn’t reached the halfway mark quite yet.

“But you’re close,” Sam teased. “So, no wasting time, Mom.”

And there it was, just the advice I needed to hear that day: no wasting time.

Since the age of 17, I’ve spent many of my birthdays seriously reflecting on what I had yet to accomplish, rather than simply enjoying them as a wonderful celebration of life. In that moment, I realized that I had been doing it again to some extent, and it was completely unnecessary. Serious reflection could wait.

I didn’t think my children had any idea what was going on in the deep recesses of my brain, but I guess they’re more perceptive than I realize.

What they might see in me could be similar to what I saw in my parents when I was young, and that is a person who works too hard for the future and doesn’t play enough in the present.

Like most everyone I know, my life is full, my days are busy and my schedule is packed. I have ambitions and dreams that I’m working on constantly, but am I relishing the entire process or am I waiting to cross some magical finish line first?

At times, I feel like I’m loving every minute of it. There are times, though, that I become lost in the chaos and life feels like one big chore rather than the magnificent gift that it is.

I believe in dreaming big and going after my goals with fearless optimism. I also believe it’s important to remember to live every day to the fullest, because, as we all know, there are no guarantees that our life will be long.

Even though my plan is to live another 54 years or more, there’s a possibility I might not. So, if I die tomorrow, I hope to have enjoyed today — and the only person than can make that hope a reality is me.

Back when I was a brooding teenager my dad, the eternal optimist, taught me that happiness is a mindset.

“You can choose to be happy or you can choose to be miserable,” he said when I was in one of my darker moods. “Life will keep chugging along, however you decide to feel.”

I can’t say his words completely sunk in at the time, but as the years have passed, I’ve tried to live by that motto more and more. If I didn’t, I probably wouldn’t be able to recognize that my daughter was right: I do have an amazing life.

I’m grateful that I have some incredible people in my world who remind me of that every day.

Even on my birthday.

Just Posted

Big Valley Bust-out Rodeo set for July 27-28

Rodeo action, pancake breakfast, steak barbecue and more

Four-car crash, including RCMP vehicle, on Highway 2

Two sheriff’s vehicles were also involved in the collision that closed down one lane

Alberta Government has yet to see any major construction being done on the Trans Mountain Pipeline

What Albertans and Canadians want to know is, when will the pipeline be built?

Our town Stettler

1920s a decade of change for health care in Stettler

Stettler competes on the international stage with Communities in Bloom

Heartland Beautification Committee’s hard work pays off

VIDEO: Trudeau shuffles familiar faces, adds new ones to expanded cabinet

Justin Trudeau shuffles his front bench Wednesday to install the roster of ministers that will be entrusted with leading the Liberal team into next year’s election.

Four people taken by STARS to Edmonton

Blackfalds RCMP investigates single vehicle rollover south of Hwy 11A

The Expo Wheel ride a no-go at Westerner Days

Red Deerians take in Westerner Days all week long

Trump was taped talking of paying Playboy model: AP source

Source says former personal lawyer Michael Cohen secretly recorded discussion prior to 2016 election

UPDATED: Remains of all eight Bruce McArthur victims now identified, Toronto police say

McArthur worked as a landscaper and allegedly concealed the remains of several men in planters

Premiers to wrap up 2 days of meetings at New Brunswick seaside resort

Meetings held in the scenic seaside town of St. Andrews on Thursday focused on trade

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

Canadian government threatens to retaliate if Trump imposes auto tariffs

U.S president had suggested that auto imports pose a national security risk to the U.S.

Cannabis education and information meeting held

Residents learn about facts and ‘puff’ facts

Most Read


Weekly delivery plus unlimited digital access for $50.40 for 52 issues (must live within 95 kilometers of Stettler) Unlimited Digital Access for one year for $50.40 Prefer to have us call you? Click here and we’ll get back to you within one business day.