Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Don't take these for granted. Seriously.

I've been following the personal and serious journeys of 3 colleagues - one with cancer, one with a hip replacement/broken leg/staph infection, another recovering from a serious car accident. With so many important things we work on in associations, it's easy to take things for granted. Like ....

1. The ability to walk. One recent email message from a favorite colleague who struggles every day to return to walking: "Don't ever take walking for granted. " So on vacation I walked for miles, ran, and even rode one of those banana raft things hooked to motorboat (with assortment of relatives) in the ocean. Don't take it for granted. And go on vacation.

2. The gift of blogs. I appreciate that some blogs are just communicating a journey. They inspire and tell personal stories. All blogs don't have to be outspoken this and outspoken that. Some allow you to change as a person too.

3. The association family. Yes, I know associations are supposed to be all business (blah, blah). But many of us don't have to look very far to find deep friendships with those we have the honor and opportunity to work with. And if in the end some of it seems entirely illusory I'll still be glad I was a believer. I once had a president sit with me in an emergency room as my then infant daughter was having a spinal tap (he drove me from a convention late at night), another I saw sitting among many hundreds of AEs while I chaired a meeting so I'd feel "supported", ... you get the idea. This recent posting by a colleague's wife about a recent Board meeting reminded me how important it is that we remember what is given to us too:

"With over 340 REALTORS in town for the Board meeting and REALTOR DAY, (name) insisted on going. He paced himself the last 3 days and kept his foot elevated so the swelling would go away. Today he was able to attend the meeting of the Executive Committee and it truly helped him. He stayed for the Board meeting and got to speak to members from across the state. [The] President began the meeting by welcoming (name) back and her warm words brought a standing ovation. It was an important meeting of the Board because it approved beginning the work to build a 6 story Association building. I was so proud (name) could be there .... Everyone made both of us have a special day as they spoke to us individually and told us they have been praying for us. The REALTOR Family is an extension of our own family."

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