Every now and then, I lose my sense of appreciation for life around me. Everything from a walk to work on a nice spring day to a fresh home-cooked meal can lose its freshness with the everyday blandness of life.
Unfortunately, there are moments that then force me to rethink my approach on life.
This week, I was left with two such incidents that rejuvenated my appreciation for the little things. In a matter of a few days, our area experienced two tragedies: the fatal car accident on Belleville Turnpike on April 25 (covered in this week’s edition) as well as the van that lost control on the Bronx River Parkway and went over the guardrail, off a bridge, and falling nearly 60 feet into a closed off section of the Bronx Zoo, sending seven people to their death.
In situations like this, my mind always drifts to the families who lost these loved ones in such horrific ways. I could never fathom losing someone close to me in the manner it had occurred in the past week. I can almost feel the pain that they are suffering through, wishing they could enjoy just one more dinner, one more laugh, or one more moment with the recently deceased.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who gets a reality check when it comes to these tragedies. If there’s one thing that can come out of tragedies such as these two, it’s that life needs to be appreciated.
One event that especially hits home to many in our area would be the 9/11 attacks, which believe it or not, will be coming up on its 11-year anniversary. While I was lucky enough to not have lost anyone in the attacks, the emptiness of the skyline after the attacks was enough to make me realize I have to appreciate what is around me, even if it only is a few minutes a day.
That being said, I have just one last reminder: Don’t make it so that you need a tragedy to remind you to appreciate life. Enjoy life to its fullest extent, even if that means just five minutes a day in a park enjoying the weather. Life is far too short to take for granted.
-Anthony J. Machcinski