Bubba had been battling a stroke and congestive heart failure for over a year. Dialysis kept him in Georgia, but Bubba wanted to travel.

With his wife Cindy, Bubba longed to make it to Arkansas to go fishing with his old friend Larry. Bubba and Larry had played high school football together many years ago, and were still close friends.

After convincing his doctors to let him skip dialysis, Bubba and Cindy were on their way to Arkansas. This wasn’t their first time making this trip. But each time, Bubba had made the statement that it might be his last.

This past May, he was indeed correct.

After returning home, Bubba’s health diminished rapidly. The physicians agreed to discontinue dialysis altogether, and Bubba was admitted into the hospital. Now it was Larry’s turn to make the eight hour drive from Arkansas to be with his friend Bubba.

At some point during the second night of Bubba’s hospital stay, one of the nurses on rotation made the following statement to Larry…

“When patients make it to my floor, they don’t talk about the ‘stuff’ they have or what they ‘did,’ they just want their family and friends.”

Only a hospice nurse would make a statement like that… but my question is, “Why?”

Why does it have to be that way? Why do we have to wait until we are so near the end to realize what really matters in life?

Why can’t we be more like Bubba?

Bubba made time to go fishing with Larry long before he was confined to his final hospital stay. He didn’t wait until he was on that nurse’s floor to know, and act on, what was important to him in his life. He chose friends and family over “stuff” well before it was too late.

What would you want if you were on that floor?

What matters most to you?

What will you do about it today?