Making Our Personal History Count
Everybody needs his memories. They keep the wolf of insignificance from the door. ~Saul Bellow
A couple of days ago, a friend of mine from NY – who I had not seen in three years – came over with her 14 year-old and her 7 year-old sons to have dinner with me.
I asked my friend if her boys were having a good time in LA. She said the young one was but her teen was complaining about not being back in NY with his friends. After thinking for a minute my friend added she thought her son would in the future look back at this trip and actually think of it with fondness. “It will be part of his memories and history”, she said.
After they left I thought about her comment. How many experiences we all have that while we are going through them we fail to give the attention they deserve?
While the human mind and heart are resourceful and can look back at life with different with more mature eyes and have the enjoyment once denied to the experience, having the ability to do that in the moment can only increase the intensity of our lives.
I’m not suggesting that a 14 year-old can fully grasp this concept, as to most of them life is never ending and they are invincible, but am suggesting we have had enough life experience to embrace this idea and live our lives in the present and with gusto.
In my past, I have been guilty of sacrificing my present for a desired future but as I have learned life is fleeting and we can only count on now. This realization doesn’t need to be sad. It is actually liberating. It gives us the incentive to be present in our lives and not distracted by what is to come because whatever it is, it will only be richer if a life is well lived.
I am now of the habit of not worrying about the things I had planned that are being side tracked by a phone call, a visit, or the unexpected from a friend or a family member as I do know these experiences will be part of my memories and my history.
We do not remember days; we remember moments. ~Cesare Pavese, The Burning Brand