Stop and smell the roses
Friday, July 19, 2013 at 11:24PM
Michael Amstein

Tonight I had an epiphany. This happens to me every once in a while, and this particular time it was really just a manifestation of what has become a popular turn of phrase. Thought to be more than 100 years old, with no known point of origin, the phrase 'stop and smell the roses' is familiar and most recently re-popularized by Ringo Star in the 80's with the release of his solo album.

What caused this epiphany? 

My beautiful wife and I were busy on the lanai playing gin rummy. Once again, as is usually the case, she was kicking my ass. When it got too hot outside, like it usually does early in the evening before the sun goes down, we headed inside. It was 5:50pm. My first thought was - damn I missed the world news again. - then I realized it was Friday and I have not watched the world news all week long. In the same breath I also realized - oh well, I don't care. I did not need to know if there was another bombing in Afghanistan, if Mayor Bloomberg was hot on his next cause to reduce obesity, or if there was more rioting based on race relations in the country due to the latest murder verdict. (on that note - have you ever noticed that the world news only has two types of commercials? - Drug companies, especially those pushing ED solutions and car companies. Seriously….)

Some may think it is a myopic view of the world. Those that know me, will know that that is not like me. When I lived in the corporate world, I religiously DVR'd the world news and would care a lot about the orphans in Somalia and their latest plight. 

Now, after moving to Hawaii, and spending a significant amount of time on the island, I have come to realize what I think I have always known. Recent events within our family have also just cemented this notion.  Home is where your family is and spending quality time with them is important. … and if you had not heard, I'm going to be a grandfather. - and a damn good one. 

I have always preached 'follow your bliss'. My EMS partners will attest to the fact that my philosophy on life has always been to do what makes you happy, and don't sweat the rest - as it will work itself out. 

I'm not the first to have this epiphany, and I won't be the last. What I have come to realize with my time here on the Big Island is that family makes me happy. Spending time with my wife, seeing my daughters, and the anticipation of my very first grandchild are what is important in this life. Taking the time to take a year off and just get totally bored has helped. While I love 'paradise, the beach and all that….  Hawaii is not home. Colorado is an amazing, beautiful place and growing up there I have totally taken it for granted. 

I'm looking forward to heading back and exploring all over again.

Where ever you are - if you are reading this blog post. Stop - and smell a rose. Kiss your child. Tell your spouse / partner / friend you love and appreciate them and enjoy your time on this big blue marble. The work you blow off tonight will still be there tomorrow. - family might not be.

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