The truly important things

In the Northeast United States, the signs of Autumn are everywhere. We hear choruses of locusts at dusk and see empty shelves where school supplies were once fully-stocked. Very soon school children and large yellow bus vehicles will join in our morning commutes. Again the carefree days of Summer draw to a close and we prepare to make that shift into the more scripted and scheduled days of school and work.

I spent the day at the local amusement park today with my family. When I woke up this morning, fragments of a poem I had read when I was a new mother hung at the edges of my memory. The fragment went something like this:

“…quiet down cobwebs, dust go to sleep. I’m rockin’ my babies, and babies don’t keep.”

This is such sage advice, and not only for new parents. Our children (and grandchildren!) grow up before our very eyes. Our parents and grandparents grow older and pass away long before we are ready to say goodbye, and I promise you that there’s no spreadsheet, proposal or report that is more important than the time you can spend with the people you love, and who love you.

So, this morning, though I spied the pile of unfolded laundry in the basket, and the kitchen project that I have yet to tackle, and remembered the proposal I need to finish for work, I took my own advice and spent time in activities that really mattered and with people who will remember me long after I retire and my spreadsheets have turned to dust.

“Quiet down spreadsheets; email go to sleep. I’m spending time with my babies and babies don’t keep.”

Make it a point to spend time with the people in your life who love you and whom you love. The rest of the “stuff” in our lives is really just commentary.

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(originally blogged by author on LinkedIn

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