Opportunities are like sunrises. If you wait too long, you miss them.
– William Arthur Ward
Perhaps you saw in one of our previous articles about how Nurse Next Door’s Dream On Seniors Wish Foundation aims to make the dreams of elder seniors come true. We even had the opportunity to make one come true a few months back which was incredibly fulfilling.
This story was supposed to be about another recent dream come true. But it’s not. It’s a sad story from this past week that was crushing. Here’s why…
We connected with a number of individual seniors and their spouses in the fall and were able to gather several dreams of elder seniors living in care homes. They are simple dreams. So simple in fact that we were shocked … going swimming again for the first time in a long time … having a Scotch during Happy Hour with family while watching a hockey game at home … going out for dinner with a spouse … getting out of the nursing home for an outing with a spouse. These dreams are so simple to achieve that we wondered if anyone had ever thought of asking their loved ones about such simple wishes and desires before!
We were quite excited last week to follow up with these individuals to see who we could help next. There were several dreamers we were really excited to help, but two special ladies as much as anybody: a lady who just wanted to enjoy Happy Hour with a Scotch and watch hockey with her family, and another sweet lady who just wanted to go back to her previous retirement community and have lunch with some friends she hadn’t seen in a long time.
But when we went to speak with them about putting the plans together, we were told that we couldn’t because they had both recently died. Two simple dreams that would have made their year. Can’t do it now. They’re gone.
At once we felt empty. Sad. Guilty. Defeated. We stewed over it for days. Talked about it. Shared the story a few times with close friends.
So here’s what comes out of this … although we are crushed that we were just a little too late to help those two wonderful ladies, we have committed to moving forward with more urgency on the dreamers we have recently connected with. We are putting plans together right now to help them achieve their dreams. We are also asking families to step up and learn about what their loved ones want to do that they have only ever dreamed about until now.
The lesson here for all of us? Stop putting off the important stuff that you know in your heart you want to accomplish. Write down the things that if you didn’t do before you died, your life wouldn’t have been complete. And think about the fulfillment that comes from making the lives of others better. Don’t give regret any more space to grow. Start taking the first steps toward your important goals and dreams right now.
And who knows – maybe we’ll get to help you with another one of your dreams down the road.
See all articles by Tawnya and Chris Wilkinson