In the instant of a lightning flash, the notion of fate becomes quite real again when you are forced to be reminded of such, suddenly. My child was rushed via ambulance to a far-away hospital last week. For 8 days I have since obsessed unceasingly with my own mortality. For 53 years now, I have played the game. Constantly reassuring myself, somehow, I still have a full heaping, helping of cherished moments left at my full disposal. I don’t.
The concept of time on this earth is a finite one, it does run out. None of us ever know when, how, or why some are afforded to reap the blessing of quantity, while others barely realize their gift. It is as unpredictable as it is unyielding. It cannot be bottled up or stored for later. And you most assuredly may not bargain with it for an extension. We get what we get until there is no more allotted to us. We surrender.
“Tomorrow is another day.” “It can wait.” “I will get to it when I get to it.” “What is the rush?” A few familiar sayings we can all certainly relate to. You’ve practiced them forever, to the point they now are commonplace in your vocabulary. In an unfortunate sort of way, we have become a society of procrastinators. We tend to view the hourglass of life as if it were always refilling itself. It doesn’t.
Yet, for some reason we conduct our daily lives acting selfishly, recklessly, and blindly to this reality. An almost innate disregard is apparent, as we take unnecessary chances. And then assume our future is somehow still guaranteed to be continuous and lengthy. It isn’t.
How much of your life-plan still contains words left unsaid or unwritten? Tragically relating to many, they will remain forever unspoken, and never scribed. Throughout the masses, unfortunately never heard or thoughtfully digested from paper or computer screen.
Singing, dancing, and laughing are all reserved for another day. We force ourselves to discover the things we hope to see, the experiences we hope to treasure, and the love we strive to attain, at a later date. They all remain on the to-do list for an uncertain tomorrow. This cycle of continuous deception to ourselves remains convincing, as we put off our good intentions blindly, reassuring ourselves “they can wait.” They cannot.
Sadly the phrase, “ so much wasted time”, may be our final thought before we close our eyes and grant permission to forever sleep. But does it have to be, if we can still try to grab a hold of the reins of possibility? Why not pursue our special moments in the day’s we each still have afforded? Isn’t it incumbent for us to get out there and live, love, and celebrate, for as long as we can?
Tragically too, many won’t even have the same opportunity to pursue their yet undone goals in life, despite their best intentions to one day “get to them”. Today will soon become tomorrow, unannounced, and void of fanfare. Ironically cursed throughout time, their lists of life-regrets will float freely in the winds of forever. Drifting alongside the rest of them; compositions from those who have also passed. Without introspection and change, this too shall be true for the rest of us. One day will also become our tomorrow. So, we should never permit our dreams to stall carelessly.
Soon, we may look deep inside our soul and realize a good portion of our best days have wistfully passed. Also, consider, however, we still possess our most blessed gift; the ability to have yet another, and another, and another. Currently, we stand waiting in line with a number in hand, derived from hidden ink. Never visible, but boldly definitive. Until those precious instances cease forever and our number is drawn, we must make the most of our remaining sand. No regrets.
As the holidays approach there is hardly a better instance to consider my written words. Digest this concept of time, for your family and your future self. Take a moment, any moment, and think long and hard about how you approach each day, each week, each month, and every Dec 31. None of us consider the notion fully; life is fleeting. It is uncomfortable to do so, and therefore we shelf reality altogether, allowing it to gather dust for another year.
Why not sharpen the experience-pencil now, and start checking off a few items instead… while you still can. Freddie Mercury once sang some thirty years ago the words of his final song-ever. He recorded them as he reckoned his own existence merely a few days before welcoming eternity, He was right.
You can’t turn back the clock, you can’t turn back the time
Ain’t that a shame?
I’d like to go back one time, on a rollercoaster ride
When life was just a game…
Live for today, not tomorrow.