What do you think of when you hear the word relationships? Husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, your children? What about your postal carrier or your bank teller? Your neighbor? You know the one that lives just over the fence. Have you spoken with them lately? Have you said, “Hi” and waited for the reply?

About ten years ago, I was given this challenge by a literary mentor of mine. I never had the privilege of meeting her, but I loved reading her books and articles. Her name, Erma Bombeck. I was introduced to Erma one day by my mother’s laughter. This was a startling fact I had not witnessed very often. My mom would snicker or giggle once in a while, but here she was full on belly- laughing with tears running down her face and saying her cheeks hurts. I had to get to know the person that could do this to my mother. That was my introduction into the world of If Life Is A Bowl Of Cherries, What Am I Doing In The Pits? and many more of her books.

After Erma Bombeck was diagnosed with breast cancer, she wrote a poem that shook me to my core and changed my life. Here it is for you copied off the internet.

If I Had My Life To Live Over

by Erma Bombeck

If I had my life to live over, I would have talked less and listened more.

I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.

I would have eaten the popcorn in the ‘good’ living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.

I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather ramble about his youth.

I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.

I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage.

I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.

I would have cried and laughed less while watching television – and more while watching life.

I would have shared more of the responsibility carried by my husband.

I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren’t there for the day.

I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn’t show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I’d have cherished every moment and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.

When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, “Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.”

There would have been more “I love yous”.. More “I’m sorrys” …

But mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute… look at it and really see it … live it…and never give it back.

© Erma Bombeck

Did you know that you are surrounded by amazing people that need love and support just like you do? Did you know that if you want more love you need to decide to give more love? That which you give comes back to you in more abundance than it was given. You may not know from where or when it is coming but it is. Wait for it.

Show love and support to others today then let me know how you feel. I bet it is one of your best days ever.

And again, and again, and again,

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