My brother-in-law opened the bottom drawer of my sister’s bureau and lifted out a tissue-wrapped package. “This”, he said, “is not a slip. This is lingerie.” He threw away the tissue and handed me the slip.

 

It was exquisite, silk, handmade and decorated with a cobweb of lace. The price tag with a big figure on it was still attached.

 

“Jan bought this the first time we went to New York, at least 8 or 9 years ago. She never wore it. She was saving it for a special occasion.

 

Well, I guess this is the occasion.

 

He took the slip from me and put it on the bed, his hands lingered on the soft material for a moment, then he slammed the drawer shut and turned to me, “Don’t ever save anything for a special occasion. Every day you’ re alive is a special occasion.”

 

I’m still thinking about his words and spending more time with my family and friends and less time in committee meetings. Whenever possible, life should be a pattern of experience to savour, not endure. I’m trying to recognize these moment now and cherish them.

 

I’m not “saving” anything; we use our good china and crystal for every special event such as losing a pound, getting the sink unstopped, the first rose blossom… I wear my good blazer to the market if I feel like it. My theory is if I look prosperous, I can pay $28. 49 for one small bag of groceries without wincing. I’m not saving my good perfume for special parties; clerks in hardware stores and tellers in banks have noses that function as well as my party going friends.

 

“Someday” and “one of these days” are losing their grip on my vocabulary. If it’s worth seeing or hearing or doing, I want to see and hear and do it now. I’m not sure what my sister would’ve done had she know that she wouldn’t be here for the tomorrow we all take for granted.

 

I think she would have called family members and a few close friends. She might have called a few former friends to apologize, and mend fences for past quarrels. She would have gone out for a Chinese dinner, her favorite food. I’m guessing.

 

I’m trying very hard not to put off , hold back  or save anything that  would add laughter and luster to our lives. And every morning when I open my eyes, I tell myself that every day, every minute, every breath truly, is… a gift from God.

 

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