Thursday, August 30, 2007

Living while you can

Scenario Number 1. Kokomo, Indiana. August 1985

After going through ownership changes, our company had been sold again. This time, since I was in management, I along with the other top dogs were being replaced by the new owners.

Only myself, and the General Manager of our radio stations knew what was going on. I was in my office, starting to pack my personal belongings and wondering what to do next with my career. I had a pregnant wife and two other toddlers ages 9 and 23 months to provide for. As I was lost in my thoughts, our news director was giving a young student a tour of the radio station. This young man, Ryan White, was just 13 and was in the national news due to having A.I.D.S. and the community reaction that resulted in being kicked out of school due to fear of A.I.D.S.

Ryan was going to be interviewed by our station and after shaking his hand, I sat down and realized that here was a young man that was going to lose his life, while, despite my own circumstances, I had a life to live. This experience carried me through many tough times of discouragement and self imposed pity parties, to get up and move forward, because I can.

Scenario Number 2. Fort Wayne, Indiana. August 2007. 22 years later.

This month a co-worker and friend came to me to tell me that his health problems that he has been battling for several years may be getting worse. Yesterday, he got the news that the tumor and cancer was back and spreading and he was going to have to undergo 18 days of radiation starting next week. He went to his attorney to put things in order as he prepares for the treatment. Doctors will try, but they are not very hopeful, that he will ever be free of this.

Again, it puts things in perspective for me and the way I live my life. We all have the ability to see the negative or the positive, but times like these, God puts someone in your office to wake you up and see the truth about making the most of each day and opportunity.