Remember to spend time with your family

Published 8:48 am Monday, December 29, 2008

A friend of mine had a heart attack recently. I was given the news as she was still en route to Rochester to Mayo. So many thoughts raced through my head. Number one was prayer so that she would survive this crisis in her life. Number two was worry that she would not survive this crisis in her life. Number three was regret that even though she and I were close we had not been able to carve out time in our busy lives to spend some time with each other. We were both so busy or we thought we were so busy. The thought briefly crossed my mind that perhaps we would not have any more time with each other. I use the word briefly because I did not want to think about our world without her.

She did survive and she and I had a conversation when she arrived home from the hospital about the busyness of our lives. Her emergency was a wake up call to both of us about the importance of time.

A new year is approaching, a new year to make and break resolutions. We usually make resolutions about losing weight and spending less money. This year I am going to make a resolution to spend more quality time with those that I care about. I have friends and family that are struggling with their health. I have friends and family that are healthy. Every year we send Christmas cards or e-mails and talk about getting together. It never happens because we have to clean our house or take care of our yard or complete some cute craft project.

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We have to rush home from work and make dinner and check our e-mail so we don’t have time for coffee or whatever after work. We don’t have time to sit down to a family meal with our family because of sports schedules or meeting schedules or whatever we think is more important then spending time with family and friends.

We are worried about the economy. We are losing jobs. We can’t afford our health insurance or our doctor bills. Grocery prices are skyrocketing. Crime dominates the news. The stock market dominates the news. We are told on a daily basis how bad it is. People are homeless and hungry. It is a new year and we wonder what we can celebrate about the new year because going into the new year the news is doom and gloom.

We can celebrate family and friends. We can make the resolution to take time for family, friends and ourselves. Take a break after work and have friend time so that you are ready to meet the rest of your busy schedule for the day. Call someone you haven’t talked to for a long time and catch up. Do something fun with your family and your friends.

Take time to play cards or even watch a movie together. Recently another friend had to spend the night because of the winter storm. We were forced to take time off and have some fun together. It was a great night that would not have happened had Mother Nature not intervened. It would not have happened any other way because we would have both been “too busy.”

In the times of illness, doom and gloom of the economy and our busyness we need that quality time with friends and family. Give yourself the gift of time for your New Year’s resolution. We always think we can’t find that time until a snowstorm, illness or an accident force us to slow down and evaluate our lives.

Happy New Year. I wish for you a year of time. I wish for you a year of making snow angels in the snow with your friends. I wish for you a year of smiles as you reconnect with someone. I wish for you a year of joy as you visit with someone old or new. I wish for you moments of peace with yourself in the midst of your busyness. Rich or poor, time is all we have or don’t have. It is up to you what you do with it this New Year.

“There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing.” — Brian Tracy

Wells resident Julie Seedorf’s column appears every Monday. Send e-mail to her at