The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

By Sandy Laumeyer
Just a Thought 

Only Today


A long time ago, I saw a greeting card that said, “You only have today. Make the most of it.”

That was brought home to me late Friday when I received a call telling me my cousin, Dorothy, had died. She and I were the sisters that neither of us had. We spent many hours throughout the years laughing, talking, pulling pranks, and later on remembering those times.

As teenagers, we did things that we knew we shouldn’t, but did anyway. Like shortening our skirts to above-knee length. Dorothy and her family lived about 30 miles from us. Her dad and my mother were brother and sister. So every so often when I was 15, I’d suggest we go visit them. Mom always thought that was a good idea.

However, I had an ulterior motive. I’d take along some of my skirts, and as our parents visited, Dorothy and I would go to her bedroom and hem our skirts. Then, when I went to school, I’d take along one of the short skirts and change into it once I got there. Of course I’d change back to the skirt I’d worn to school before I went home. Dorothy and I thought we were pretty clever.

And then there was the Sunday afternoon Dorothy and I went to Des Moines to “drag the loop.” Since she was a few months older than me, she had her driver’s license. Just as we pulled up at a stoplight, a car with several boys our age came up in the lane next to us. We got to talking. A second before the light turned green, Dorothy asked the boy in the passenger seat if they wanted a drag (race).

Both boys grinned and said they sure did. Just as the light changed, Dorothy flipped her lit cigarette at the boys and we took off, laughing all the way.

Every summer my brother and I went to stay with our aunt and uncle for a week. One of Dorothy’s chores was to separate the milk so my aunt could sell the cream. Somehow Dorothy always managed to con me into washing the leaves of the separator, a job she really did not like to do as there were 46 discs to wash and dry by hand.

The past several years Dorothy and I both faced and fought major health issues. Hers were cancer, strokes, and several heart attacks. We’d call each other every couple of weeks or so to see how the other one was doing. After the first few minutes of reporting on our health, we’d be talking about our children, grandchildren, friends, shopping trips, food and more. If I was planning to make a trip back to Iowa, we’d make arrangements to get together for at least one day and do our own thing.

Friday evening, after saying goodbye to my brother, who had called to tell me about Dorothy, I thought to myself there really is only today. Only today to tell those close to you that you love them. Only today to do a kind deed. Only today to do something you’ve always wanted to. Only today to take that trip. ­­­Only today to live your life as fully as you can.


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