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What do you Celebrate

Women Posing for PhotographTwo weeks ago, I celebrated the life of a friend who had died – whose life time achievements, while impressive, were not as important to those of us gathered at the church, as who he was and how he had lived.

Last Sunday, I celebrated another friend’s life – at her 80th birthday with family and friends. After a trip down memory lane, we wrote down all the things we treasured about her on pieces of paper so she could add them to her scrapbook of memories. We had such great fun laughing and sharing and listening to stories, hugging and cheering her on!

Yesterday I celebrated my daughter’s test results that showed an all clear – no new growths – no new cancer. No cards – no flowers – just an overwhelming deafening shout of YEAH! over the telephone. That said it all.

How often do we wait for major events before we recognize and celebrate the lives of those we love? We cheer at graduations and toast at weddings and blow out birthday candles – but it is in those quiet moments of shared encouragement, understanding, and acknowledgements where we celebrate lives.

So I commit again my intent to look for those everyday moments when I can surprise and confirm others for their courage, hard work, and tough choices that often go unnoticed. I want to celebrate the lives of those around me, affirming their efforts and sacrifices.

Take a coffee break and just “be” there for someone going through a tough time, listen and validate a friend’s struggle, help a colleague go through their challenges. Listen to your kids – really listen. Tell your spouse you love him or her. Do it every day. Focus on all that is good instead of all that is unpleasant.

How many people can you celebrate today! Let’s have a busy day.

Marlene Anderson


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