Sunday, March 2, 2014

The Reality of Mortality

Mortality has been on my mind recently.  Illnesses in people my age, the death of someone I used to be close to, and my own aging have brought the reality of mortality into my vision.  I’ve been struggling with the dichotomy of what I’m doing with my life – how I spend my days and what I’d like to be doing with my life – the hopes and dreams that I’ve harbored for years.

The reality of my life right now still includes a great deal of mothering, and it probably always will, though I’d expect the needs to diminish with time.  It also includes some business work that isn’t really something I like to do or know how to do well, but it is necessary.  And, lately, it’s also included my own health status and maintenance – not just the day to day time spent exercising and preparing meals, but also a two-week bout with a winter cold and another two-week bout with a bad back – time and energy suckers!

The dreams of my life, when I sit back and think about what could be, are to live in our dream home (that will come with time), to write more – enough to put together a book, to develop a couple of business ideas and, of course, the age-old desire to learn to play the drums and play in a rock-n-roll band.

So with mortality on my mind, I’ve felt disconcerted by this dichotomy in my life.  I’ve been plagued by the realization that I don’t have forever to accomplish my dreams, yet I simply don’t see how, right now, I can make those dreams a reality.  It suddenly hit me that I don’t have to accomplish those dreams.  Perhaps it would be enough to simply feel good about the way I’m spending my days right now.  Is it worth the angst to dream of dreams only to have the reality of today slip by in unhappiness and yearning?  I realized that I could decide to let those dreams go for now, maybe forever, and just enjoy the reality of my day today without the guilt of what’s not getting done.

I’m not sure I’m ready to let it all go, but it was an epiphany to think that I might.

1 comment:

helen said...

We are from the generation that was told we could do it all. This was a bit of an overstatement. Making peace with what we actually can accomplish is an important task.