In death, we learn a lot about living. Some of the lessons learned from Shawn’s passing were shared at his celebration of life, but I believe they are worth repeating. I have to give credit to Shawn’s brothers for writing some of these. I have added my own lessons learned as well.
We can learn to cherish those closest to us. Do not take for granted the time you have with loved ones.
We can be more aware of letting loved ones in, in ways we haven’t before. We can learn the importance of embracing our own vulnerabilities by trusting others unconditional love for us.
There is never a bad time to let those you love know you love them–and just as important to let them know why.
If you are lucky enough to be with the one you love, cherish and be grateful for all the little moments–even those moments where you may feel slightly annoyed. For one day, you will miss them. I’d love for Shawn to be here to tell me I loaded the dishwasher wrong, left my drawers open again, or put too many clothes in the washer.
Take videos of those you love. You will miss their voice.
Be kind to all those you meet–you never know the challenges they may be facing.
Life is short. Live each day of your life with purpose and meaning. Find your happiness.
Engage in activities you enjoy and spend time with loved ones more often. Work can wait.
Share your true feelings with others, but if at all possible, do not leave angry. You never know when your last moment will be with someone.
Life is not always fair. It’s messy and it’s difficult. It’s how we choose to react to these adverse situations, that shows our true character.
Mental illness can be fatal; suicide being its symptom. Do not take it lightly. Talk about mental health more openly with others, especially if you struggle with it yourself. You never know who this may help in the future.
Thank you, Shawn, for teaching me more about life and living. Because of you, I am already a more compassionate, understanding, and loving human being. I feel more openly, love more deeply, and share more freely. You live on in me.