Yesterday I went to a “celebration of life” for my friends’ daughter that passed away.  Her twins were diagnosed with mitochondrial disease at a very young age and are now 18.  One of the girls just passed.  First I would like to say that there should be a rule in the universe that you should never have to bury a child!  With that said…. What an inspiration my friend and daughters are.  First of all, my friend to have the strength to stand up and speak is just amazing.  Second, there was a slide show and home movies playing and in every single picture of these girls they had the most beautiful, huge smile on their faces.  So innocent, so happy, so inspirational.  We can all learn something from them.  They may not appear to be like a “normal” 18 year old (which can be a good thing) but I can tell you this, they are happier than most 18 year olds I’ve encountered (or even than I was- ever hear of teenage angst).  To love life for what it is, to find joy in the simple pleasures is truly a blessing. 


It’s so easy to wallow in self pity and feel sorry for ourselves for just about anything – it’s much harder to pull ourselves up and make that conscious effort to hold our head’s up, take a deep breathe and smile and just be happy that today is another day.  Why is that?  If someone is always happy people are always saying “oh, they must be bottling up their feelings”, “they’re putting on a façade”.  Why do we think someone can’t just be happy?  I find it sad and bizarre. 


Our society is so busy climbing that perpetual ladder of acquiring bigger and better that we lose sight of what’s truly important – each other- being happy with our family , with our friends and with life.  You can have all the “things” in the world but without happiness you don’t have much.  What good are all of those “things” if you are unhappy?


The image of their smile is burned into my brain and I hope I never forget that image. 


Live a simple, uncluttered existence and be happy.  Life is too short.


Thanks for the lesson Katelin and Kelsey.