Cherish The Time–For Real

made it her own). My now-towering nephews eating everything in sight, and my newest 4-month-old grand-nephew stealing all hearts.

My Mom would sit with us in the kitchen as we laughed over family stories, debated the latest political situations and I tried my best to learn the Flossing dance (I need a LOT more practice). In sum, we had a blast and Mom didn’t want to miss the fun!

Then, a week after Thanksgiving, my 94-year-old Mom was rushed to the hospital. She has advanced dementia. We weren’t sure what was wrong, but she was slurring her speech and was in pain. Was it a stroke? We were all on high alert, as at her age and frailty, anything could happen.

And that’s what inspired this post. As I paced the floor back in Chicago awaiting word of Mom’s status, the fact that we were all together for Thanksgiving took on intense meaning.

It could be my Mom’s last. We had to Cherish The Time.

While I was in Baltimore, I spent time with Mom as her primary caregiver, as Jessie, our beloved caregiver for Mom spent time with her family for the holiday. It was tough work, but I cherished the opportunity to do it. There were times when Mom just loved being hugged, and I loved hugging her. To think that a few days later that opportunity might be gone forever in an instant–it was truly sobering.

All I can share is that please, tell those you love that you love them. Spend TIME with them. It is the one thing that can never be replaced. Time will march on no matter what. Don’t let small things become big things that keep love away. It just isn’t worth it. Forgive and move on to Cherish The Time that you can share.

This year, I’ve lost three close mentees/friends/mentors. Chef Judson Allen, 36. Ken Smikle, 66, Barry Rand, 74. All gone too soon. The blessing that I am most grateful for though, is

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