By Glenne Ellen Fucci, Regular ContributorAugust 22, 2015
Seize the day. Although it’s one of the most overused phrases, it’s fairly appropriate as we approach the beginning of new school years, new semesters, and new jobs. Many of us are a bucket of nerves as we approach all of these unknowns, and almost all of us are shedding a tear that summer is over. However, it’s not just about seizing the day as these new times approach, but also about taking advantage of everything that this life has to offer.
We’re told all the time that life is too short to be unhappy, too short to let opportunities pass us by --and no matter how cliche it sounds, there’s some serious truth in these things.
I debated a lot about what to write this week, but knew that I had to choose this topic based on the events of the preceding days. This week I learned that the sister of my brother’s best friend succumbed to a cancer that she has been battling for years. I didn’t know her well - nothing more than a few casual conversations over the years at our brothers’ football games, and the most recent of which was in May at their college graduation. In fact, she would probably think it’s weird that I’m writing this about her. But she’s a reminder, an inspiration, a story instructing us how we should live life to the fullest, because we never know when it will be taken from us.
image via ohhimamocker.com
We could all write about how terrible cancer is, how it has affected our lives in profound and painful ways. Many of us could also write about how cancer has affected the other young people in our lives - our friends, siblings, classmates, cousins. But we could also all write about what these young people have taught us. They’ve taught us that life isn’t going to wait on the sidelines until we’re ready to embrace it.
They’ve taught us that we should travel the world, spread our love around, bungee jump off that bridge, and eat that last slice of pizza. Because we our time here is finite, and we shouldn’t worry too much about fitting into those skinny jeans.
The girl who passed away this week was 20 years old and about to begin her junior year of college. If you haven’t yet hit 20, think about all the hopes and dreams you have for yourself before you reach that age. If you’ve long since celebrated your 20th birthday, think about all your goals for the future and all that you’ve gotten to experience over the past few years. That should put in perspective just how tragic losing a battle to cancer at the age of 20 is. We all have so much more to do in this world-- so much more to learn and experience, contribute and share, and it’s pretty darn sad that we have to lose some of our own along the way.
Although I didn’t know much about her, I think our young friend would want us to go out and take advantage of everything that life has to offer; to dream big and small, to climb mountains and soar high above the clouds, to set goals for ourselves (and for the world) and go after them with unrelenting tenacity, to take in the big moments as well as the seemingly insignificant ones. I think she would want us all to remember that we are oh so lucky to get more time here and to never take that for granted. Her parents asked us all to wear something pink this week in her memory (it was her favorite color) and if you feel up to it, I encourage you to in her memory and as a reminder to yourself of how special you and all the good vibes you send out truly are.
Have you ever experienced the loss of a friend? How can you begin to live life to the fullest? How can you seize today? Tell us below!
Glenne is a third year law student hailing from NYC, University of Michigan ‘13 grad and Beyonce enthusiast. Currently residing in Korea, her interests include duathlons/triathlons, traveling near and far, documentary films, consuming sugary cereal, watching mid-2000s teen dramas and singing her heart out at Betty Who concerts. You can watch her attempt to navigate Asia and beyond on Instagram @glennefucci.
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