June brings wonderful moments with the beginning of summer and often many exciting celebrations for graduations and often weddings. It is a time of hope and joy for the future.
However, every exciting beginning means another chapter must end. In the case of seeing our young ones graduate from high school, or middle school, or leaving elementary school, or even in an adorable preschool graduation, it means a certain time of our children’s lives, and ours, is over. We celebrate milestones and leave the previous years behind.
It’s not sure with every round of applause we can find a bit of a tear, even if it stays sparkling in the eye, of a mom or a dad or a grandparent watching our child walk up to get their diploma. Or even walk down the aisle.
They say time goes too fast — and for parents even more so.
But it is the case for more than just proud parents. Recently, The Darien Times got an unusual phone call. It is not unheard of for us to get an out of the ordinary, interesting or occasionally irate phone call. In this case, the call was different.
The caller was from the West Coast — and he told us he was a Vietnam veteran. He was suffering from ill health from the effects of Agent Orange, he said. Many of his fellow veterans had died and he was quite honest that he wasn’t sure how much time he had left.
Looking at time in the face urged him to seek out an old friend he served with in Vietnam and with whom he had lost touch. The old friend had grown up in Darien. So he popped Darien in his Google search and up popped The Darien Times. And he called us.
All he had was the old friend’s name. So we took it and said we’d do what we could. After a few searches and a few phone calls, we confirmed the old friend had moved out of state and though the state was known, his number wasn’t. A few more searches and it turned out he still had old friends in the area. We passed on the name and number of the gentleman on the West Coast for the old friend to choose to contact or not.
The next day another call came from the Vietnam veteran — his old friend had reached out to him. They had a long talk. He was happy.
We all view time through our own perspectives. We waste minutes and hours and days in petty arguments or online squabbles or political bickering. We waste the limited time we have working too hard or too much or being distracted in the precious hours we have with our aging parents or our siblings or children that are only young once. We consider we might be too busy to help an ailing Vietnam veteran find an old friend that will bring him some joy in what time he has left.
Then we consider the worth in using our time for what is valuable, positive and joyous — in what brings light into our lives and those around us.
Today is a gift of time. Make your life worthy of that gift.