The Real Thing

As many of you know, last week we laid Dave’s dad to rest.  Traveling from as far as Colorado, North Carolina and Missouri, we all dropped everything to travel to a small town in Michigan to come together as a family and say goodbye to our patriarch.

At first, the mood was rather festive.  Hugs and kisses were plentiful as was the occasional “Gibbs’s slap” among the menfolk.  We caught up on one anothers’ lives and commented on how the children had matured, while the adults had not.

We eagerly left our normal lives behind to support one another fully.  Cell phone calls were only answered if they related to the arrangements.  Laptops remained mostly out of sight.  We had time only for each other.

As we boarded our flight home and I began anticipating all the piled up emails, snail mail, and laundry, it hit me: all those things – the task that make up my daily life – aren’t really important.  Coming together as a family to laugh, cry, and love – that’s the real thing!

This isn’t to say that what I do everyday is worthless, it isn’t. But it shouldn’t —  in fact, it can’t — be as important as the real stuff.

So next time I swear at something stupid,  raise my voice to a love one unnecessarily, drive obnoxiously close to the slow poke in front of me, or stress over a self-inflicted deadline, I’m going to try to remember the real thing.

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