Making the Most of Life...No Regrets!

Today, our very own Lori Leger shares her thoughts on living life to its fullest...

During lunch with friends this past Friday, I heard some awful news. ‘My’ Marine’s best friend lost his life. I won’t get into the details, but it was a tragic twist that no one saw coming. It got me to thinking about life, and how you can never tell what’s waiting for you just around the corner. Here is this young man, Benjamin, who served in the U.S. Marines for four years, made two tours in Afghanistan and managed to survive without losing any of his best buddies over there. He comes back, and a year and a half later, loses a dear friend. A young man of 24, someone he’s grown up with, someone whom I’m sure he planned to have serve in his wedding one day, or maybe be a Godfather to his child, or at the very least an honorary Uncle. Such a loss, and if you come from a small town, as Ben and I do, you know how hard something like that hits.

It got me to thinking about life, and how you can never tell what’s waiting for you just around the corner. You think you have all this time to do what needs to be done, to cross things off that bucket list, and to get around to doing that one thing you’ve always told yourself you’d do one day. When it comes down to it, we just never know how long we have, do we?

So write that first novel, or a book of poetry. Jot down the words to the song that’s been bouncing around in your head. Learn to play the piano, or the guitar. Stand up and sing Karaoke in front of a crowd, take that trip to Hawaii you’ve been dreaming about. Go to Paris and stand under the Arc de Triomphe, or Rome, to view Michelangelo’s greatest masterpiece on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

Of course, not everyone has the funds for that, but if you do, go for it. Maybe your bucket list includes something as simple as getting your ears pierced or being daring enough to get a tattoo. Maybe you want to learn to ride a motorcycle so it’ll give you an excuse to buy that Harley you’ve been drooling over.

Or maybe your dream is as life-altering as quitting your J.O.B. to start a business of your own—even if that business is to write full time, for less than your old salary.

I know what that’s like because I did it—and it’s terrifying. I was lucky because I had my husband’s support, but believe me when I say we’ve made financial sacrifices for the sake of my craft/hobby turned career. Even though, I have not regretted a single minute of it.

It’s given me something more precious than diamonds or gold. It’s given me time. Time for doing what I love—writing, reading, spending time with my grandchildren, cooking Sunday dinners for my family to give my kids an afternoon off, and making sure my husband knows how much I appreciate him. Simple things, really, but things like that are what make life worth living, aren’t they? What can you buy with money that is better than a child wrapping his chubby arms around your neck? Nothing—absolutely nothing compares to them exclaiming, in that adorable toddler language, “I luz you, Maw Maw!”

I’m not finished with my bucket list by a long shot. After all, I haven’t made the New York Times Best Seller List yet—or maybe I am finished and I just don’t know it, yet. Maybe I won’t wake up tomorrow. Heck, maybe none of us will.

One thing I know for sure is if that happens, my friends and family know that they mattered to me. They mattered enough for me to give up something precious—my time. Even if it’s just a text or a phone call to tell someone I’m thinking of them. It’s something I know I’ll never regret doing.

And that’s the key, isn’t it? The sign of living a full life, no matter how long or short a time you’re on this earth—to leave with no regrets?

Just my opinion.
Have a good day, week, life...

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  1. What a beautiful post. Wise words that we should all heed. How sad about your marine friend's friend. You are right, we never know what's around the corner. Thanks for the reminder to live life to the fullest.

  2. This is a great reminder, Lori. Now I'm going to think while I go about my day. What would I like to do still if I die tomorrow.

  3. Living without regrets is tough. But I just saw a reminder from one of Sharon Salas's FB posts that Lot's wife turned to a pillar of salt when she looked back. That's a pretty visual reminder.