Choose To Make The Rest Of Your Life, The Best Of Your Life

by Sherry Riter in Dad,Family,Lessons of Life,Motivation,Self-Development  

blue sky snow tree white clouds

Today is my dad’s birthday. Well, it would have been his birthday if he was still alive. The reality of him not being here still creates a bit of stress and panic for me. I feel that life is quickly slipping through my fingers. Wasn’t I just a child being held by Dad a few years ago? That thought is immediately followed by another…I keep losing the things and people I love and hold dear in my heart.

That is the plan of life.

You are born, live and at some point death takes you from this earth.

So why do you and I waste so much of our time and energy on things that are out of our control? Hmmm, there are so many answers to that question, but I think basically the limited time we have to live is out of our grasp of understanding. We don’t fully appreciate our finite minutes. What makes it even more of a puzzle is that there isn’t a set day or number of hours we will live. It is all so random or at least it appears that way.

In the wee hours of the morning, I felt close to Dad. Looking at the sky, I vowed to make the rest of my life, the best of my life. Immediately following those words, a voice said, “Your best days are over.” I have such a wicked brain sometimes. How dare it try to rain on my parade and steal my hope.

Today you are stronger, more intelligent and wiser than you have ever been in your life. All you have to do is let your actions reflect your greater self. It is entirely your choice…

You can adjust your attitude to move forward happily and make positive choices or not.

snow landscape trees white

Everyone gets knocked down in life. Not everyone chooses to get up.

The last year of Dad’s life we had very frank conversations. Dad wanted to die. He was tired of living with the pain of guilt and regret inside and so Dad chose to give in instead of fight it. I tried desperately to “make him want to live,” but as you are well aware, no one can make anyone “want” anything.

Dad got knocked down and did not get up. He felt that all the best parts of his life were behind him and that he had squandered many of them. My inability to give him happiness made me stressed and I was always trying something new to breathe a new attitude in him. When Dad died, an irrational part of me felt that I had failed because I was unable to help him forgive himself, have peace or feel fulfilling happiness. Of course, part of that irrationality was caused because I was deep in the throes of PTSD and was slowly falling apart myself.

I’ve come a long way in the past three and half years since Dad’s passing. I have fallen down many, many times, but something inside of me always makes me get back up.

Today we all start off with a new opportunity to choose the right, love with our best self, replace negativity with a positive attitude, lay down our bad habits in order to feel peace and to embrace each experience with hope.

blue sky snow tree white clouds green

With the rising sun, you can choose to make the rest of your life, the best of your life. You can replace your cluttered, wounded mind, heart and actions with a fresh attitude of hope, happiness and peace. Will it take effort and sometimes be downright hard work? Oh yes, but it will be entirely worth it.

Did you just recheck to see that you were still on The Redhead Riter’s blog? I know that everything I just wrote must sound like a different person authored it, but I’m tired of crying and watching my life fly past me. It is past time for me to take my life back from the pit of fear, unhappiness and unrest.

Don’t you want to reclaim your life too? You’ve been knocked down and it may appear that there isn’t anything to look forward to anymore, but that simply isn’t true. The best of your life is now…today…right this very minute.

My Dad died without complaining and with dignity. I am going to try much harder to use his example and live my life in the same way he died…without complaining all the time and with dignity. Even though he is gone, today I am wishing Dad a very happy 72nd birthday where ever he is and whatever he’s doing. I am thankful that he is and always will be my Dad…my very funny, silly, handsome Dad.

I hope that you and I will go forward today with renewed faith, happiness, hope and that we will feel the love of our family and friends. A beautiful day of opportunity and love awaits each of us. Let’s fully embrace and enjoy life and each other.

This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joan April 4, 2014 at 12:31 pm

Beautifully, beautifully, beautifully said! 🙂


2 Sherry Riter April 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! 😀


3 Joan April 4, 2014 at 12:32 pm

Such an uplifting post! 🙂


4 Sherry Riter April 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm

I’m glad you found it uplifting! Thank you! 😀


5 Joan April 4, 2014 at 12:42 pm

You asked, “Did you just recheck to see that you were still on The Redhead Riter’s blog?” Well, to be candid with you, I was just about to recheck and see if I was still on The Redhead Riter’s blog, but then I saw the sidebar with all that delicious food tempting me and I knew with all certainty that I was on The Redhead Riter’s blog. 🙂


6 Sherry Riter April 4, 2014 at 2:36 pm

LOLOLOL 😛 Smarty pants! 😀


7 Tim King April 4, 2014 at 2:26 pm

“He felt that all the best parts of his life were behind him and that he had squandered many of them.”

I’ve been thinking a lot lately of regrets. I wonder whether I can do anything about them. How many of them are actually just “The grass is greener on the other side”? (Or maybe it wouldn’t actually been greener.) Is it possible to make up for past regrets, or do we just need to forget them? I’d like to read your thoughts if you feel you have something to add.



8 Sherry Riter April 7, 2014 at 10:25 am

Regret is something that often weighs heavy on my mind. Since I was FORCED to look back over my whole life in order to cope with the trauma and heal from the PTSD that tormented me, I often ran into experiences where I felt such overwhelming regret…things I had done and things that I should have done.

Some regrets you can’t make up for no matter how hard you try. I think with that type of regret, you have to get over them and the most important step in that process is forgiving yourself. Using my dad as an example again, Mom forgave him and I forgave him, but he did NOT forgive himself. After coming back into my life and receiving the unconditional forgiveness that he felt unworthy to receive, he also saw all the experiences he missed out on. Even though he was included in every family event (even with my mother and her new husband), Dad just couldn’t forgive himself. His regret was so overwhelming. It was impossible for him to go back and recapture the moments from my childhood. He could enjoy the NOW with me, but the regret of the THEN was too much for him to get past.

Many times I think we perceive the grass to be greener on the other side of the fence, when in fact we are just bored or miserable in our current circumstances and want a quick, easy out. If we would focus more attention to NOW, we would realize that the grass is just as green and maybe greener on our side of the fence.

Acceptance brings peace. Accepting that we are fallible humans means that we also need to accept that some of those mistakes will bring about consequences we will regret, BUT that IS the human experience. The key is to not make HUGE blunders over and over again so that the regret is minimal.

If we get stuck in regrets, they will kill us. Regret diminishes health through poor eating habits, depression, etc. and all of those things combined lower our immunity to terminal diseases.

I’m REALLY hard on myself most of the time. I expect perfection of myself, so it is hard for me to let go of regrets. Believe me, I work on this constantly.


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