What regrets do we not experience, after the death or the departure of a friend or beloved relative; thinking that we have not sufficiently made him perceive our respect for his virtues, our gratitude for his good advice, and the depth and tenderness for our affection for him.
Sometimes we dare not, because we are too particular as to how to express it.
At other times we do not find an opportunity, because it always escapes us. True devotion is somewhat timid; it is always fearful of not doing enough, or of doing it badly or inappropriately.
We often postpone the expression of our affection, because we think we can do it better at some other time. We leave over for happier days of leisure the sweet dream of opening our heart to a loved one, in order that he may for once clearly see the large place his dear image occupies in it… But alas! the days pass rapidly by, and suddenly death comes, or, what is perhaps sadder for the heart, final estrangement, leaving the sad thought that others will show him better than I how they appreciate his goodness.
Ah! when we can love to-day, let us never say, I will love to-morrow; when we have an opportunity of showing our gratitude, let us never put it off even for a moment.
– From: Golden Grains, Eighth Edition, H.M. Gill and Son, Dublin, 1889