I grew up with parents who owned a newsagency and worked side by side 7 days a week, 14 hours a day. They were always talking about becoming grey nomads when they retired and focused on the future. I left home at 16 and moved to the other side of Australia a few years later. I phoned them (at the shop) each week but Dad was always too busy to speak….I would say hi and he’d reply “I’ll get your mother”. This went on for 10 years. At 64 years young, Dad became very sick and they sold the business. Within 6 months of retirement he passed away. Mum relied on him for everything and had no clue how to do simple things that he’d always done, like putting petrol in the car or changing a light bulb.
She was lost for many years but slowly started her life again from scratch.
I felt like I had lost him many years ago.
They both worked so hard and put everything into their retirement plans and life was cut short.
He died over 10 years ago and my whole outlook on life changed when he got sick.
I live for today.
I spend every moment I can with my kids.
Memories are so much more important than materials.
It certainly brought life into perspective for me.
Cherish what you have today as it may not be there tomorrow.

Posted by paulah2, 5th December 2015

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  • yes i bet that if he knew what you know, he would have been there more for you. i think that his behaviour is indicative of the age group. Males are more stand offish so don’t be personally hurt. At least you have evaluated what you want. i agree that life is too short


  • Yes you must stop occasionally and smell the roses.


  • I’m so sorry that you couldn’t enjoy your father’s company for all those years. Sometimes people just get so busy, that they forget the important things in life.
    I have one friend (only child) whose father used to work so much. He was a chef in a restaurant and, for many years, he didn’t take any holiday. There was always a reason to work 7 days a week.
    He finally retired and started enjoying his grandson and his recently born granddaughter. He was busy doing all the things he didn’t do before and he planned to do when he retired. Then he got ill: liver cancer. He died after 6 months. He waited too long to start living his life. Exactly like your dad.
    I agree completely with your words. Carpe Diem. Enjoy the moment.


  • True. But your father no doubt thought he was doing the best thing for his family.


  • Thanks for sharing your story. Different generations had a different attitude about working for the future. It is al about balance and working for the future but also living in the moment too and cherishing all of the opportunities.


  • Great reminder to us all. Thanks for sharing


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