As a family historian/genealogist, I spend much of my life looking at the past …. digging into what happened in yesteryear, decade, century and further back in history. I know more about what happened in the eighteenth and nineteenth century than what is going on now (though that is largely by choice as, to be honest, the media of today rarely shares positive stories to brighten up my day).
Having dropped history at aged 13 – Mr Penn, you were a great History teacher but the topics we studied at school really didn’t light my candle – I have learnt far more in the last two decades, off my own bat. I remember the six wives of Henry VIII (divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived…. and all that jazz) but very little else from senior school historical education. Sorry….
I guess after we leave full-time education (at whatever age we choose to depart), we find our own way …. in every sense. We grow as people and what I have valued these past few years – and even more these last few weeks – is the importance of making time for the present as well as the past. Just this last weekend, a friend lost her husband suddenly and unexpectedly. Last summer, my best friend was diagnosed with a brain tumour and another friend has recently been diagnosed with cancer.
As Managing Director at FWL, I work hard to ensure that our clients receive the best service possible, but I do my utmost to keep in touch with friends and family on as regular a basis as possible. We have to make the most of what we have now, before it’s too late. I cannot count how many Heir Hunting clients say that they wish they had maintained contact with their long-lost aunt/uncle/cousin/whoever …. and often one of the first questions asked is what has happened to their effects such as photographs, family documents etc. By the time we get involved (99 times out of 100), their possessions have been dealt with, by which I do not mean that they have been retained by someone just in case anyone should want them in the future. You can’t pick your family but don’t live to regret your actions of today when it’s too late to change them.
Make the most of now.