Life is shorter than we'd like especially when it comes to sharing it with the people that we love.
My neighbor Kathleen who lived next door to me, and would let my family fish in her pond was a prime example of this. She was a strong, feisty woman who was full of wisdom and laughter. We shared many things including a love for cats, Harry Potter, and we even shared the same birthday: July 18th.
I remember my graduation gift from Kathleen was a lovely cross-stitched saying with a fake graduation hat attached to the frame and the 6th book in the Harry Potter series (Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince).
Shortly after this Kathleen was diagnosed with brain cancer. She was gone for a long while at the hospital.
I did not recognize the fragile woman in the wheelchair when she was finally able to come home. The doctors said she would get better, and I believed them. She didn't.
I told myself when she was better I would go over and visit her, but I never got that chance. She died ten days after our birthday.
I feel like a horrible person because it was hard for me to visit her and see that she was so vulnerable. I didn't even get to say goodbye.
Love the ones you love each and ever day and let them see it. Never shy away no matter how hard it is. You may not get tomorrow.
Linda M. Crate's works have appeared in various anthologies and magazines both online and in print. She is the author of the fantasy books in Magic Series and the fantasy novel Phoenix Tears.