For the last several weeks, I’ve been living in between a past I remember so clearly and a future I can’t quite imagine yet. The days have taken on their own rhythm, slower than before, more relaxed, and certainly with less eating out and less of shopping malls and movie theaters. The vagabond of the past is a memory, the vagabond of the future will stay closer to home base and be more cautious than before, at least for a while.
As I get older, time feels elastic, stretching out and then snapping back. Was it really only two months ago that I arrived back in Florida? Two years ago, my brother retired. Four years ago, I did. Five, and we were throwing my dad a big 90th birthday party. Hell, 10 years ago, I was running a marathon at Big Sur. 15 years ago next month, I got laid off, scared and wondering how I would find another job. Spoiler alert: I did; things worked out fine in the end.
Things really do work out in the end. Maybe not the way I would have had them go if I was running the show, but I’m not running the world. I’m mostly along for the ride. All I can do is control is how I see things and how I act. It’s taken me decades to learn that, over and over again, lessons taught and not remembered.
The fresh magnolia blossom of yesterday has fallen, and by tomorrow, all the petals will be on the ground at my feet as I walk by. Life goes so fast, even if the last few months have felt slow. This lockdown, the social distancing, the lives lost, the jobs and businesses gone, it is changing all of us. We can’t live in the past, wishing these things had never happened. They did happen, they are happening, and they will be part of our future going forward . All I can do is try to see things clearly and choose my own actions, face the future and let the past go.
The sooner we let go of holding on, the sooner we can hold on to the beauty of what’s unfolding before us. Nothing was ever meant to stay the same forever.