Every year for Easter and Thanksgiving, Dad brings us to Genetti's at around lunchtime for their holiday buffet. The food is good, and I'm always happy to spend time with pop, but it's just not the same since my grandparents passed away. We would invite him over for dinner at our place, but he spends the holidays with his wife's family.
That's why this time of year reminds me that I should try to live in the moment and be thankful for the happiness that you have. This is especially true for the happy moments that become so much of a part of our routine that we take them for granted. The little things that have put a smile on our face on an almost daily basis have happened so many times in the past that we have no doubt that they'll keep on happening. If we pause and think logically about it, we all know that these things don't go on forever. The world changes. Our lives change. People die. However, all of those things seem so far away from the moment that we're in that it's easy to forget that the things that have made you smile every day will someday be a distant memory. We rarely ever recognize when we're experiencing one of those moments for the last time as it's happening.
One of those moments for me is having lunch with my grandparents during the summer when I was out of school. Grandpa usually came home for lunch, and Grandma would have a sandwich waiting for him. It was usually ham (which my grandparents called "cold meat") and American cheese on a Kaiser roll with butter. Sometimes they would have turkey or lebanon instead of ham, but it was usually ham. We would sit at the kitchen table, have coffee and chat about whatever while having lunch. It was an ordinary, everyday lunch that has happened thousands of times from my childhood to my teenage years and through my 20's, but not too long into my 30's. I can't say for sure when the last time was that the three of us sat at the kitchen table and ate lunch. I'm certain that on that day, when I took my last bite of sandwich, I had no idea that it would be the very last. So today, I try my hardest to be thankful for every pleasant moment, no matter how much they've become a part of my daily routine, because I probably will never know when I'm experiencing it for the last time.