Let me start this off with a little preface, I read a LOT of books. I love it all: mystery, fantasy, classic, adventure, self help, business, biographies… you name it, it’s on my Kindle. And one of the books I go through pretty often (you can just flip to any page and find amazing stuff) Is called Tools of Titans. It comes from a podcast that interviews so-called “titans” of industries. Each short interview in the book is about something totally different and truly, there is something for everybody. One day when I was flipping through I found a snippit of the greatest blog post ever written (as I like to call it). I’ve never ever went back or shared a post or read a post so many times. It’s a solid reminder to me of why we do it all. Why we work to hard, and what is really, truly, important in life: Family. And our precious time with them.
The post is called The Tail End, and I dare you not to cry, because once you read it, you’ll realize that you too are in the tail end of the time you have on earth with some of the most important people in your life. I mention this because this blog post is inspired by The Tail End. If you love the post, you can even buy the PDF to print.
Anyway, I want to tell you a bit about this family and why they made my top families of the month of December. I met Aaron through the school his kids go to in Paris. I was there at an event and shortly after he contacted me asking to meet. He’s a real estate agent both here in Paris AND in the US, and wanted to talk to more people in the community. The thing about Aaron is you can’t get through a few sentences with him without realizing how deeply he loves his kids and wife. After our first conversation I felt like I already knew the whole family!! When we finally got to work together and make family portraits of them almost a year later, it was JUST before his daughter was set to go back for her last year of high school, but this time, in the US, while the family was still living in France. You could tell they all knew that it was the best decision for her, but that there was already a missing piece, even days before she was set to head out.
During the hour we spent together, we laughed so much and to be honest, I totally understood why Aaron couldn’t stop talking about his family. They’re spectacular. Really, truly, wonderful humans. Smart, compassionate, hardworking.. I could go on.
I mention the tail end because one of the most important quotes that has jarred me since reading it, is this, “It turns out that when I graduated from high school, I had already used up 93% of my in-person parent time. I’m now enjoying the last 5% of that time. We’re in the tail end.”
Whenever I see families whose kids are going off to school or university, it makes me think of this. They’re in the tail end of the major face to face time they’ll have in their lifetime with their kids. And the kids with their parents. When I first read this I broke down in tears and thought about my own parents, what they mean to me, and making the moments that we ARE together, really count. Because really, even though I’m not even 30, living thousands of miles from my family makes it that I don’t have the same face to face time I did before. I too, am in the tail end.
So what do we do with this? We make the time we do have meaningful. We choose our priorities wisely. And we make the effort to be with whomever you love and do whatever you love, as much as possible.
It’s so clear to me that this family doesn’t even need to hear this, they already knew all of it. And for that, I love them even more.
P.S. Please take 60 seconds and read the post The Tail End, I promise you won’t regret it.