The work of the first stretch and the near corner are long past. The legal and financial issues long since resolved (or should be!). Anger, denial, depression, and bargaining have long ago been hurtled or abandoned. The charades of your life (we all have them) have hopefully been revealed through backstretch reflections.  Wounds have been uncovered, healing has begun, strained relationships are mending and new hopes for the next generation transmitted. The far corner has been a rewarding time of first recognizing the blessings of your own life and then taking the revealed wisdom and passing it  on. The home stretch has arrived but the exhausted deathbed times are still ahead.

Now you will have more time, albeit less energy, to ensure those batons have been safely transferred and none are lying dropped on the track. And if they are, pick them up and pass them again with a smile.  If humility was lost during the halcyon days of your successes its return can warm and open the hearts of your audience. Now, at last, the homestretch is a time to be shared in lavish celebration. Those who have come to see life as a gift cannot be diminished by suffering.

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