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Don't Wait Till You Are Dying to Appreciate the World Around You

Updated on May 11, 2018
Karen Hellier profile image

Karen Hellier is a freelance writer and eBay entrepreneur. She lives happily in the mountains of North Georgia with her husband and her dog.

Simple and bright flowers make me happy!
Simple and bright flowers make me happy! | Source

Dedicated to My Friend Nanci


A few years ago a very close friend of mine found out she had cancer. She was a mom and a grandmother but was only in her fifties, and her cancer was at a very late stage. I was devastated, and tried to stay in touch with her. What I started receiving from her were weekly emails with beautiful pictures attached of things in her world that she had never noticed before. There were pictures of a perfect rose, a beautiful beach scene, a picture of her dog in the woods, etc. Her grown children had started accompanying her on nature walks because she was too weak to walk alone.

She brought her camera along on these walks. She saw things she had never noticed before and captured them with her camera, and shared them with friends and family online. It made me sad to realize it took her knowledge that she did not have much time left here on Earth before she noticed the beauty around her.

I don't want to wait till I am dying to appreciate the beauty of the world around me. I am sure there are many others that do the same thing. We go about our business day to day and never notice the field of daisies on the way to work in the morning because we are too intent on looking straight ahead and fighting the traffic to get to work.

We may not notice the beautiful and fragrant honeysuckle growing on the wall up the street from our house because it's easier if we hook the dog out on the back run instead of walking the dog up the street and enjoying the look and the heady scent of that glorious honeysuckle. We drive by the beach on our way to run errands, not stopping to get out of the car, feel the sunshine on our faces, inhale the salt air, and listen to the waves as they crash on the shore. Are we too busy to appreciate the beauty of the Earth God gave to us? Will we someday be sad when we hear bad news from the doctor and then think, 'Wait, my time can't be up because I didn't have time to stop and smell the proverbial roses yet."

We need to make the time while we have it. Because tomorrow may be too late. And when we arrive before God in his Heaven, if he asks us how we liked the beauty of the Earth He created for us, I for one don't want to have to tell him I was too busy with life to look around.

I want to soak it all in now and share it with the rest of the world, or at least my friends and relatives and HubPages readers! And maybe, just maybe, encourage a few here and there to do the same. I won't ever be sad that I was observant and was able to see that field of daisies, or the deer and her fawn off in the woods as I walked my dog through them. We need to make the time while we have it. I want to soak it all in now and share it with the rest of the world, or at least my friends and relatives and Hub Page readers! And maybe, just maybe, encourage a few here and there to do the same. I won't ever be sad that I was observant and was able to see that field of daisies, or the deer and her fawn off in the woods as I walked my dog through them.

I will, however, be sad if I only pay attention to my busy schedule and the traffic, and the grocery shopping, and all the other errands that require my time. I will try to walk the dog, and smell the honeysuckle, and stop and take a picture of that beach on a sunny day to remember sights and sounds that are God's gift to those of us on Earth. I will do it not only to honor God but also to honor my friend Nanci, who died six short months after she got the news that she had cancer. And I hope she somehow knows that she inspired me to not take the beauty around me for granted.

Hopefully, this article has also inspired you. My strong recommendation is to take advantage of all of the beauty that is around you now. Take a walk and really look around. Smell the salt air as you walk on a beach and see the beauty of the ocean. Breathe in the fragrance of the forest as you walk through the woods. Stop by a stream or waterfall and listen to the sound the water makes as it careens over rocks and pours down to the earth below. If you have a camera on your cell phone, take photos of the beauty that is all around you. If you want to go a step further, buy a nicer camera than your cell phone camera and start taking photos of the beauty you see. I can bet you will look at the world differently when you start to really observe the beauty all around you.

Appreciation Poll

Do You Think You Appreciate the Beauty Around You

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The peace of the moon over the sea at dusk.
The peace of the moon over the sea at dusk. | Source
A beautiful sunset seen from my backyard.
A beautiful sunset seen from my backyard. | Source
The ocean is always beautiful!
The ocean is always beautiful! | Source
A boat at sea is always a beautiful and peaceful sight.
A boat at sea is always a beautiful and peaceful sight. | Source
A cruise ship looks prettier when framed by palm trees, and are a reminder of a relaxing day on a tropical beach in St. Maarten.
A cruise ship looks prettier when framed by palm trees, and are a reminder of a relaxing day on a tropical beach in St. Maarten. | Source
I saw this beautiful hawk in my backyard when I was walking by a window in my living room.
I saw this beautiful hawk in my backyard when I was walking by a window in my living room. | Source
The mountains of Vermont are always beautiful to me.
The mountains of Vermont are always beautiful to me. | Source

© 2012 Karen Hellier

Comments

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    • Karen Hellier profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Hellier 

      6 years ago from Georgia

      Hi Carol!

      Thanks for stopping by. You are right about those priceless moments. On our deathbeds, we won't be saying I wish I had put in more hours of overtime, or spent more time cleaning my house. It's these special moments that we will be grateful for, and the time spent with those we love.

    • profile image

      Carol 

      6 years ago

      Life is too short. No matter what happens, take time to smell the roses, enjoy the beauty of nature - go to the beach and watch the sunrise on the horizon that blissful feeling of majesty is awesome. Be playful walk the dog, cat and be one with nature.

      Watch a baby take his/her first steps, talk for the first time and explore the world around them. This is priceless.

    • Karen Hellier profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Hellier 

      6 years ago from Georgia

      teaches 12345,

      You are welcome. Thank you for reading and commenting. If you don't mind a little advice, spend as much time supporting your friend and spending time with her as you can. She needs the support, and you will treasure the time you 2 spent together even after she gets well!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      6 years ago

      This is a beautiful tribute to your friend. One of my best friends just discovered she had cancer early this year. She is taking it well and continues to trust God for her healing. Thanks for the inspiration on this hub.

    • Karen Hellier profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Hellier 

      6 years ago from Georgia

      Well, I look forward to seeing your work. An artist's work is an interpretation of what she sees, so I am sure it will be a true representation of your inspiration of the photos.

    • Karen Hellier profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Hellier 

      6 years ago from Georgia

      Lizam,

      Thanks so much. She was a special lady and it broke my heart when she died so young ( 54). Made me determined to appreciate life more. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      6 years ago from Arizona

      I promise I will post anything I paint. I think the photos are so beautiful I don't want to ruin the image. I tend to paint very loosely..not abstract exactly.

    • Lizam1 profile image

      Lizam1 

      6 years ago from Scotland

      Beautiful photos and a lovely tribute to your friend.

    • Karen Hellier profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Hellier 

      6 years ago from Georgia

      carol7777,

      Okay but don't forget to share what you have painted with the rest of us. I wish I could paint, but at least I can take pictures to have memories! Thanks for reading and commenting!

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      6 years ago from Arizona

      Your photos are breathtaking. This is a lesson for all of us when we get caught up in challenges and problems. Life is a short time and everyday we waste feeling bad is a day that will not return. This is a lovely hub and thanks for sharing all these wonderful photos. I will have to get my paints out.

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