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  • Jered Stewart

From Our President

Tragedy strikes - and life goes on.

A young student graduates from college, the first in their family to achieve such a feat, and life goes on. A successful promotion at work, a big raise, you made partner at the firm - wow! And life goes on. The good, the bad, and the ugly, no matter what you do, no matter what you’ve done, or what you’ve gone through, life does go on.

As time passes and life goes on, it seems to me that no matter what happens, the world doesn’t stop to wait for us. You could be living through the most significant tragedy of your life and somewhere in the world someone is celebrating their success. There can be laughter and joy in one house and sadness and despair directly across the street. No matter, we all move ahead.

Just last week a friend of mine from college lost his 12-year-old daughter in a tragic accident. It was no one’s fault, it was an accident. My wife and I wept for them. I have a daughter who’s nearly ten and another who’s six. We can relate. We hugged our kids a little tighter that night and we offered encouragement from afar. Life for them has changed forever but as I’ve said, it goes on. Sometimes life turns on a dime. A peaceful and beautiful summer morning turns to mourning and there is no going back.

But I’m sure that you already know this. Many of our residents have lived longer lives than I have, although I hope to catch up some day. And many of you have experienced heartache and heartbreak, and loss that cuts deep. Some of you know all too well of this pain of which I speak. Perhaps it helps to know that you are not alone.

Many of the people you meet are fighting battles that you may know nothing about. People have been broken and have been hurt, sometimes by those they love. As I think about this it makes me realize that there are times we need to pause, be patient, take a step back, show grace, and give someone the space they need. Perhaps you are like me, somewhat of an introvert that doesn’t always exude a soft presence. That’s ok if we are mindful and aware of those around us, perhaps we can be a welcoming presence in a world filled with people who are in pain. Will you choose to love one another, maybe someone you don’t know, by showing patience, understanding, and grace?

When asked how they’d like to be remembered, many people say, “I’d like to leave the world better than I found it.” Is this you? If so, then please love one another, forgive someone, forgive yourself, and don’t wait. After all, life goes on.

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life – it goes on.” – Robert Frost

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