Sunday, 6 July 2008

Life's too short

I got a phone call this morning from my friend's husband, completely out of the blue.

"Have you heard?"

What dreadful words those are. All sorts of possibilities run through your mind, and none of them good. Luckily, this time, what came next wasn't the most shattering news imaginable, but still pretty bad. My friend, he went on to tell me, had collapsed on the street and started vomiting, had been taken to A&E and diagnosed with a bleed on the brain. She was in hospital, he said, but able to talk and move. Thank God for that.

I went to see her in hospital this evening. She's completely bed bound for at least a week, and luckily suffering more from boredom than anything else at the moment. The doctors aren't sure what caused it and are doing more tests, but have advised her generally to cut her stress levels and live life a little more slowly from now on.

I think that's great advice for all of us. Last year, one of my husband's friends died, completely out of the blue, and at a young age. It was a huge shock, and a wake up call for everyone who knew him. Both my husband and I began to think a little differently. It suddenly became even clearer than before how important our relationship, and our family, are; and how unimportant our jobs are compared to that. Sure, it's nice to enjoy your work and have money to spend, but when it comes down to it, no-one ever lies on their death bed wishing they'd been at work more, do they?

We know that doing this may have effects for us both career-wise, and financially, but we don't care. Our family (and our health) come first. We've chosen to invest our happiness in relationships, not in our career ladders. Because after all, life's too short already.

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