Learn life lessons early

By Christa Collins

There are many pieces of advice on how to live your life. Each
person interprets the advice in his or her own way, but many miss
the true meaning.

Everyone always says, “Life is too short.” Unfortunately, I
don’t think you can truly understand the meaning of that phrase
until you experience the day that someone close to you passes
away.

That day came for me on Jan. 1, 2008.

When I heard the news, all I could think about was the things I
never told her. I went to high school with her for four years and I
never told her how much I admired her as an artist.

In those four years, plus the one and a half since we graduated,
I never found the time to tell her. Now my chances are up, all
opportunities gone.

On the way home from her vigil, I finally understood the meaning
of a line in one of Kanye West’s songs.

“People never get the flowers while they can still smell
’em.”

You never think about telling someone how much they mean to you
until he or she is gone.

“You never know what you have until it’s gone.”

But why does it have to be gone? True, that person may be
somewhere else and not sitting right next to you, but he or she
left you with something.

That person you are missing must have had some positive impact
on your life if you considered him or her a friend. And those are
the things, the moments, the times that you must remember.

And not only remember, but expand upon. You can make the person
you care about your inspiration when he or she is gone, or realize
how inspiring one is while he or she is still here.

Say what you want to say before it’s too late. You don’t get
that moment back, even if you wait 80 years for it. That piece of
time is unique. You may not get another chance, so why let a good
opportunity slip through your fingers?

“Live life to its fullest.” That is what people will tell
you.

Some take the advice as an excuse to party and live with
promiscuity. I don’t see how a person could say they are following
this advice when that person can’t remember most of the nights he
or she lived to the fullest.

So instead, take the advice and appreciate everything you are
given. You can’t blow every little piece of drama out of the water.
You’ll be miserable your whole life if you do. You have nothing to
complain about – you’re alive.

“Life is not fair.” Well of course it isn’t. Each person, every
single one of them, has a unique life. No two people have
experienced the exact same things. Naturally it makes sense that
life isn’t fair.

What would we learn if life were fair? Nothing. We learn from
each other and our different experiences. If every person had the
same experiences and the same life so life were fair, it would be a
very plain world.

I prefer my world full of color, whether it be in a piece of
artwork by a friend or learning from someone different than I
am.

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