Where will I be in 5 years? 10 years? Will we be living here? Where will our kids go to school? Which friends will continue to be part of our lives and who will fade away as circumstances change?
All this thinking, this reflection on the past and the contemplation on the future can be simultaneously exciting and yet filled with angst. "If I could do it again, I would..." But that is just fruitless, isn't it? We haven't invented a time machine and even if we did, that whole time-space continuum thingy would be irrevocably destroyed causing unforseen damages -- and who would chance that, anyway?!
No, we can't go back any more than we can predict the future. Oh, some of us plan obsessively for the life we think we want in N years but truth be told, you cannot predict what will happen that can take even the best laid plans and waylay them. Control is an illusion, isn't it? Yet that doesn't mean that we can't be deliberate with the present.
The more I think about it, the more I feel as if by choosing to live deliberately, in the moment, in the present -- the happier and more fulfilled we become. That doesn't mean that we spend ever penny, or we neglect obligations to chase our fleeting whims. Rather, it is more about looking at what we have and making a conscious choice to be happy with it.
I think people are in our lives to live them with us as active participants. We learn so much from each other when we allow ourselves to be open to change -- and change only happens when something from one person causes a reaction in another.
I'm experiencing a time of great change these days. I'm looking back at the last 49 years and as crazy as some of them were, my regrets are few and far between. I truly love the people who are in my life. I love my new job -- and the chance I have to learn and grow and make a difference. I love that my children are becoming their own persons right before my eyes. I'm growing old with my husband, my friends, and sisters and brothers-in-law (my co-authors of our collective lives history (fairytale?) and am always amazed at who we are and how far we've each matured through the years to the people we've become.
I'm with the same man I fell in love with 26 years -- at this point we've spent more time together than apart. Despite both of us growing and changing, and challenges of perception, health, wealth, and circumstances, we have lived a charmed life so far. I have truly intimate relationships with people over time that span the practicality and reality of our respective lives. We can go months, even years without seeing each other and yet, we can pick up the phone and continue as if no time has passed. That is a gift of the present. That is a gift that makes me so aware of enjoying the moments while they are happening, because that is truly what life is made of -- *this* -- being truly here, present and particpating.
Contemplative? Yes. Crazy? Maybe. Here? Definitely.
Does my personal navel-gazing belong on a public blog? I don't know the answer to that question. I think yes. Why do I share? To connect I think. I enjoy solace, but I enjoy being part of the collective so much more. Joy, discovery, love, lust, sadness, loss, ache, confusion and clarity -- all of it is meant to be experienced together and not in a vacuum. When we cry, our tears are filled with emotion that spill from deep inside. Tangible emotion in a liquid form. When we laugh, the sound is irrepressibly communicable -- we can't help ourselves but to react to the sound caused by delight.
We were meant to be here and to share, that is what I know. That was by design, not default.