Most of the difficulties that we experience in our lives help us grow stronger and teach us lessons, but there are those which can knock us down and make us lose hope for the future. Richard Pringle, a bereaved father who lost his three-year-old son because of cerebral hemorrhaging, experienced this loss, which is certainly the most difficult thing any parent can experience.
Richard's eldest son, Hughie, died at age 3 after being diagnosed with a brain problem that led to cerebral hemorrhaging which abruptly ended his young life and left his father with many question marks in his head and a sharp pain in his heart. Despite the difficulty of the experience, Richard decided to share some insights in an emotional post on his Facebook page, which has been shared tens of thousands of times and has touched the hearts of people all over the world.
The following 10 important lessons that Richard learned from his difficult experience helped him pick himself back up, and they will teach you what really matters in life.
Anyone who has experienced true love in their life, be it love for a good friend, family or children, knows that this feeling does not end, but grows with the years and is expressed in a multitude of ways. Love is an inexhaustible emotion that allows us to stay connected to people in our lives, and we must not try to hide it or be afraid to show it. We all need to “smother” others with love and kisses and not be afraid to shower them with the most human emotion of all.
Richard summed up the false sense that of most of us have and the prying thought that always tells us, "I don’t have enough time." After what he went through, Richard was able to see more clearly that even a single minute was precious time, and that we had to spend it on things that are dear to us. "Stop what you are doing and play, even for a minute. Nothing's that important that it can't wait." These powerful words remind us all to stop the race of life for a moment and to appreciate the important things, even for a moment. We will always have errands and chores, but they can wait for us to finish with more important matters.
In modern times it is not difficult to take our smartphone and photograph small and big moments with our most favorite people. After the death of his son, Huey's pictures and videos were what Richard had left of him, and he stressed the importance of documentation because "one day, it may be all you have left." We are sure that most of you apply this advice without thinking about it, but between the pictures and the video clips, try to capture people you love in hidden moments, without them seeing you filming them, so you can see them as they are, naturally and without filters.
“You think what you spend matters? It doesn't. What you do matters. Jump in puddles, go for walks. Swim in the sea, build a camp and have fun. That's all they want. I can't remember what we bought Hughie, I can only remember what we did”. This powerful sentence sums up the importance of moments in life and not of money spent on items that don’t matter in the long run. The memories you create with the people you love are precious, and the special moments with them will be engraved in your memory for life, so be sure to create and save them.
There is nothing like belting out your favorite songs with the people you love. It frees us, allows us to be silly and enjoy the songs we love, and Richard stresses its importance. In his words, he said that the best memories of his son were when he sat on his shoulders or in the car with him and they both sang the songs they loved. "Memories are created in music," he summed up nicely, reminding us to open our mouths, release our vocal cords and just sing.
There are days that simply pass us at the speed of light and become a vague memory over the years. When this happens, it is important to shake ourselves and cherish moments that may seem small, but sure are meaningful. "Night times, bedtimes, reading stories. Dinners together. Lazy Sundays. Cherish the simplest of times. They are what I miss the most. Don't let those special times pass you by unnoticed," Richard said of the passing moments that we all need to grasp tightly with both hands, and remember well.
"And if you forget, go back and kiss them," Richard said of sweet partings from the people we love. Unfortunately, this insight comes from not knowing when will be the last time you see a loved one, as happened to Richard with his son. These small kisses will bring a smile to both sides faces, and they are another small, stolen, and sweet moment you can spend with them.
There are quite a few drab moments in our lives we wouldn’t mind ending, but according to Richard, we must not allow this to happen. Instead, color should be put into gray activities to add point and pleasure to them and turn them from boring to fun. “Shopping trips, car journeys, walking to the shops. Be silly, tell jokes, laugh, smile and enjoy yourselves. They're only chores if you treat them like that. Life is too short not to have fun.”
Richard gives us very good advice on our relationship with others and what we will remember about them. "Write funny things they say, cute things they do," said Richard, noting that he and his wife did so only after they had lost their son. We all need to do this in order to perpetuate the little things that make people unique to us that they may not pay attention to, but we see, remember and love them for.
To kiss goodnight,
To have breakfast with,
To walk to school,
To take to university,
To watch get married,
You are blessed. Never, ever forget that.