Gather ye rosebuds while ye may

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

I have a stand on my desk that says: “I am kind of a big deal.” I sort of stole it from Ron Burgundy in the movie “Anchorman”. Not exactly words to live by, but it is kind of catchy.

I would like to think we are all a big deal to someone in our lives. At our jobs, to our family, our church, whatever organization we may belong to, or maybe just to our pets. We may have to look hard at some points in our lives to see it, but I hope it is there.

I can remember as a 7– to 8-year-old kid my dad had a birthday. He turned 33 years old. To a very imaginative child this was very concerning to me. I knew for a fact at 33, your days were numbered. No one lived much past that. My dad would be gone soon.

A few of my teachers also come to mind. I considered them very old at the time, and looking back most of them were younger than I am now. Is it normal to think everyone else looks much older than yourself? Anyone that’s ever attended a high school reunion always leaves with a sense of how you’ve held up much better compared to all the others.

Growing up I was very close to all my grandparents. They played an important part in my childhood. Many lessons were learned from them. But, my great-grandparents, that was another story. I kind of remember one of them, but that’s about it. Most of them had passed on either before I was born or before I was old enough to know them. I think most of you will agree that our memories will only go back about two generations. Much beyond that and the average life span takes care of that.

So, what’s the point in this seemingly random writing? While we are in “big deal” mode, I think we should all consider how short our small moment in time is. I had to look it up, but globally the average lifespan for women is 77 years while men are living to be only 70. In the U.S. it is listed as being higher with women at 81 and men at 77.

An old friend of mine passed away this week. I was thinking he was much younger than he was. To my surprise he was 77 years old, the average age for men.

William Shatner was in the news last week as he went into space. Who else was surprised to learn he was 90?

Robert Herrick wrote in the year 1648:

“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,

Old time is still a flying.

And this same flower that smiles today

Tomorrow will be dying.”

Think of when your kids were small and how they ran to meet you when you came home every day. As they got older the excitement just kind of wore off.

How many profound moments have we let slip by thinking we will get it next time or later? Moments to where we could make another’s day with a small compliment, or a helping hand in some way or another? Just a simple thank you, I appreciate you, I admire you, and so many other ways we can encourage our peers or maybe even a complete stranger.

We all like to know we matter to others. It’s so good to be appreciated and sincerely complemented. It doesn’t matter if we’re on the receiving end or the giving end, it can make a bad day turn golden.

Why do we let those precious moments pass us by?

The Latin phrase “carpe diem” says it best. Translated it simply means seize the day!

Randy Butler is a lifelong resident of Highland County and a licensed real estate agent for Classic Real Estate in Hillsboro.

Randy Butler Contributing columnist Butler Contributing columnist