Well, it‚Äôs Christmas Eve. ¬†God has looked favorably upon me and granted me one more year, one more Christmas with those I love.¬† Every day that I awake, I am proud to say that I am a MSA survivor.¬† I will continue this way of thinking until I can think no more.
There have been lots of changes this year for me, significant health changes for me as well as Susan, a new place to live, and last but certainly not least my retirement from Fairborn City Council.¬† I was so blessed to have been able to finish my term.¬† Changes, although scary, have a way of giving clarification to your life.
Of course, suffering from a deadly disease is not a change anyone would wish for, but with the risk of sounding ‚Äúclich√©‚ÄĚ, it does make you look at things in a different perspective.¬† When you get to visit with friends and it is time to leave, you say good-bye a little differently.¬† You hug a little tighter.¬† You linger a little longer.¬† And with family, it is a whole different game.¬† I remember a time when we would all be out the door scattered for the day to take care of business without a thought.¬† An unanswered phone call to another would cause a grumbling of inconsideration.¬† Now, we are very aware that this may be the last time we see each other, the last time to say, ‚ÄúI love you!‚ÄĚ
Fortunately we know not to take one minute for granted.¬† I know that sounds weird.¬† How could we be fortunate to be in this situation?¬† But we are fortunate because we won‚Äôt miss a moment that otherwise people just pass by.¬† Everyone knows the holiday season is really the only time we actually stop to appreciate all those that are in our life.¬† I ask that you take a minute and think about this‚Ä¶.
Pretend everyday is the last time you may be able to talk to those around you that you love.¬† Be kind to strangers.¬† Don‚Äôt be quick to judge.¬† You have absolutely no way of knowing what is going on in that person‚Äôs life.¬† The struggles they face everyday.¬† They may be, as my wife Susan describes herself, held together with ‚Äúkitty litter‚ÄĚ.¬† Dealing with the bad stuff of everyday life, clumped together with tears, ready to fall apart at any minute.
This Christmas, be especially thankful and caring to each other.¬† We always hear of those that have passed away unexpectedly.¬† We never know when we may be one of those.¬† Never take for granted that you will have one more time to tell someone how much you appreciate them, one more time to say I love you.
So to start this new tradition‚Ä¶.Merry Christmas to all our old friends, our new friends and to those friends we have yet to meet.¬† We love you all!
Frank, Susan and Angelina