30 Mar Live Now. Not Later.
Had dinner last night with my sister-in-law’s Mom. It was at the Senior’s Retirement community. It was a nice dinner with our table of 7, good food, good entertainment (one man guitar), and good conversation. Oh, and did I mention there was a little boy … maybe two … that was dancing with his Mom during the entertainment and running around, supervised by Mom, of course, which added energy and smiles to the evening. You could almost hear the room sigh in unison … “oh, to be young again.”
It was a quiet evening to pause and reflect as I looked around the room at all the seniors. Some were in wheelchairs, some used walkers, some weren’t sure who or where they were but each one with an unique and special life story. Yet, each one in their twilight years knowing that their life end is just hovering in the periphery. Of course, always the big question … when will I die. Matter of fact, my Dad expressed a similar sentiment the other day. “I know I am going to go soon, but it sure would be nice to know when so I could plan to get some things done before I go”.
Back to dinner. We had a lively, friendly table. We joked and sang (not during dinner, of course, as my young girls know, at meal time, “if you play, your food goes away!”) and had friendly banter going around the table. One of the women on our table was Annelies. A German woman with a lovely accent, sparkling blue eyes, a lively demeanor, and big smile. Her husband, Henry, was very quiet and reserved – too quiet. Taking a closer look, I noted his brown eyes reflecting confusion and puzzlement. Ahhh … Alzheimer’s. His wife doted over him and answered his repetitive questions as a mother would respond to a child. At times, I would catch her unguarded expression – one that seemed tired, somewhat resentful, and annoyed. Annoyed at her Henry? I doubt it. I think the annoyance was more about being at the near end of her life and disappointed how things turned out. This sentiment came through when at one point in the evening, she looked at me and said, “ It’s a shame that we all live in the “later” and look at us now … it is later. Live for today and enjoy your life, because “later” is not always that good”.
How many of us have said … when I … “insert your option here” … have kids, turn 40, make a million, kids go to college, retire, move to smaller house …., I will “insert your choice here” … be happy, be less stressed, write poetry, get married, travel ….
Why wait? Tomorrow may never come. Thinking back to when my Mom passed away so unexpectedly last August. We had spoken the day before and little did we know that there would be no tomorrow for my Mom. Who knew?!
Wow, life really can be uncertain and unpredictable. I think I am going to take Annelies’ advice to heart and really do my best to live today and not wait for LATER.