Friday, August 16, 2013

Sad Motivations

I'm sure at some point or another I've hit upon some of our motivations for wanting to change our lifestyle.  The cliche "don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today" is among our motivations.  Perhaps the better version of this is a quote attributed to Pablo Picasso "Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone".

You see, while my parents did the 'work for 45+ years and then enjoy your retirement' thing, my father-in-law was not as lucky. Born in a German enclave in the Ukraine, he had early training as a baker before he immigrated to the U.S. with his family late in his teen years.  Shortly after arriving here, he was drafted into the Army where he served his new country with pride. He was a blue collar man, working at foundries and finally ending up at Lowrey's Meat Snacks where he was a heavy machine mechanic.  He made a reasonable and honest living providing for his family and enjoyed taking road trips to see the sights of his new homeland.

A couple years before retirement, the Lowrey's plant in Denver closed. By that time the years of hard work had taken a toll and he was on disability until he reached the normal retirement age of 65. He was starting to suffer from the early stages of COPD and other health issues.  His love of travel became increasingly difficult as time passed.  Recently his health had deteriorated to the point that it was difficult for him to get out of his home. Two weeks ago he passed away.

While I know he had a good life, I'm sure he would have liked to travel more, taken a trip to Germany to see family as well as see more of the U.S. But each of us only has a limited amount of time here and we don't know when that time will end.  So, to everyone reading this I say don't put off chasing your dreams and to my father-in-law, rest in peace.