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Make the most of these moments

Dr. Drew Werner

EAGLE COUNTY – I had the privilege of attending a Catholic school conference last weekend with my wife, who is a kindergarten and art teacher at St. Clare of Assisi School in Edwards. I did not really plan to attend but rather just spend the day with my two sons in Denver while my wife was at the conference. As fate would have it, extra tickets were available and I was asked if I wanted to sit in. With only a small bit of reluctance I agreed.After choosing a breakout session that sounded interesting, my wife and I sat in the back of the crowded room listening eagerly. Then it happened. A simple story was told. I realized that while the tale had nothing to do with medicine, it really had everything to do with medicine. I hope the story makes you look back, too.It will happen someday to each of us. We will find ourselves standing at the gate to heaven. The line is long, but the people are friendly. Our needs are all taken care of. There is no rush anymore. So, here I am waiting patiently when God announces that it is snack time. I walk over to a simple table where a lone man is sitting dressed in a brown hooded robe. As I introduce myself, I smile and wonder if his robe is the precursor to the hoodies my sons love to wear.”Hi, I’m Drew. How did you get here?”The gentleman looks up at me with kind, intense blue eyes and calmly replies: “Greetings, I’m Saint Anthony Daniel. I was an early Jesuit of the church and brought the teachings of our lord, Jesus, to Canada.” He pauses for a moment and then continues: “I was sent to Cape Breton and Bias-d’or Lakes near Lake Huron with my Catholic Jesuit brothers. The conditions there were terrible.” I feel humbled as he speaks. “Later I went to the area known as Quebec, where I founded the first boys college in North America. I was saying Mass in a small chapel there when we were attacked and I was killed.” With those same kind eyes he looks at me and says, “I am pleased to meet you. What brought you here?”I look down as I reply, “I gave up chocolate for lent.” Then I add, “And I almost made it two weeks.”I hope when I do make it to the pearly gates, I can tell a better story than almost giving up chocolate for Lent.I talk to a lot of my patients about their own stories and struggles, and how we have each been given a finite amount of time, energy and resources. We will be given no more. I encourage them to stop and recall the time, energy and resources they have already used. Was it well spent? How much was wasted or squandered? It is sobering to realize that with this finite amount, once it is gone, it is gone.Make the most of every moment. Don’t take your health for granted. If it is good, keep it that way. If there is something you need to work on, get going. I hope you are building great stories to tell!Harald will finish the two months of his “New You Revolution” tomorrow at 5:40 a.m. and 7:40 a.m. on CNN. How did he do? Tune in to find out. He has some great stories to tell. Now the challenge is to keep his great start going forward with the same dedication and passion. If you see him please congratulate him on a job well done!Dr. Drew Werner of the Eagle Valley Medical Center writes a weekly column for the Daily. He encourages health questions. Write him by e-mail to editor@vaildaily.com or c/o Editor, Vail Daily, P.O. Box 81, Vail, 81658.Vail, Colorado


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