Yeah, I know this doesn’t happen anymore : ) – I’ve known my husband since I was 14; we celebrated our 32nd wedding anniversary last week. Our long-time family friend Billy Thompson introduced us on a Jack and Jill ski trip to Bryce’s Mountain, VA. Still remember the laughs we all shared with friends like Donna Patterson and others while wolfing down Hostess powdered sugared donettes (although Krispy Kremes remain the Hampton hometown favorite).
Alas, this year’s anniversary was bittersweet. As we celebrated this milestone, a family friend, Stephanie Sheppard Hamlin, made her transition after a valiant fight with cancer. Roland introduced Stephanie to her husband, Charles Hamlin, another member of the inner circle. In early December Deborah Saunders White, Chancellor at North Carolina Central University, also lost her cancer battle; we also knew her from high school. Both women, in their 50s, made important contributions on the home front, government, business and education. Deborah’s obit stressed the importance of education.
My goal: to step up my game in and live more fully in their honor. Today, I’m simply honored to have known them; Stephanie and I took dance lessons together. In addition to being there for family and friends, we must realize nothing is promised. This is thy lesson they have passed on to those of us who remain in the land of the living.
If there are things you want to do in life, just do them. Stop making excuses. Instead of wasting time, be about the business of bettering yourself and assisting others along the way. An important lesson many of us never learn.