They say loss is part of life. They say into each life, a little rain must fall. Some lives will only drizzle and others may pour, but either way, we all go through the rain. They also say that dying is part of living and death is part of life. They say that all things, do, and must change. Everything has a beginning, a middle and an end. There is no avoiding this. The only thing that cannot, will not, and does not change is fact.Continue reading
There is no real difference between now and then, except for you and me of course and the age of our existence. There is no more difference between us and then, except for this, us, still being the way we are, —still hoping to be the way we dream to be, which is young, always young, and always hopeful, eager to feel and eager to laugh.
I want to feel the way we do when the sun comes up and hits the garden at Central Park near 116th street on a summery morning, where, in the middle of nowhere in the city life, there was a scene, which could have been from a movie; —as if New York City became this totally different world because of a little garden with a slate-stone walk-around, lined be specimens of trees, the kind that seems royal and regal; enough to give someone the feel of storybook reasons to walk around and love someone so much that you’d though time could stand still.
And here we are, Project Earth, the world’s biggest conveyor belt, literally, as it moves around the sun. Things will be mild soon, up here on the northern hemisphere. We will lean in and move closer to the sun.
Why, it was just a year ago today that Project Earth was at this very same position. Time sure flies when you’re moving through orbit. We age and we grow, and look at it this way, a year has gone by since this very day.
But what does that mean?
If it were up to me, we would never grow old.
If it were up to me, everything would feel as good as the first time my Grandmother told me a bedtime story or fed me a meal. Nothing else in the world ever feels like grandma’s bedtime stories. Nothing tastes as good as when Grandma makes it.
If it were up to me, everything would be as easy as an afternoon I once spent in the autumn months. The air was neither too warm nor too cold. The sun was on its way down and the world was quiet. I could see the golden hue from the sunset reflecting against the trees in a field as I walked home from a moment that was (shall we say) less than comfortable. But yet, the afternoon was somehow by a beautiful moment before the sun went down. God, that was perfect.
As parents, we have hopes and dreams. We have ideas of what we want our children to become. We wrap them in their little blankets and we tell them bedtime stories. We hope, and we pray to keep them safe.
We teach them all they need to know to the best of our ability. We teach them their A B C’s, the 1 2 3’s, and all about the itsy bitsy spider and the wheels on the bus that go ‘round and ‘round.
I have news for you.
There is always a way out. There is always a way to be better and there is always a way to improve. We may not always like it. We may not always believe in it. We may not always think this is true or that anything can help. But that does not mean that improvement is not available.
Beware the angst of youth.
When you have no other way to voice yourself, then you have no other language beside your actions. And you try. You try to fit. You go along to get along but the frustration in your heart makes it impossible to play along.
Know what I mean?
Next, you find yourself in compromising positions, doing things you know you’re not supposed, which is fine, until you’re caught —until you’re cornered by someone, maybe it’s a teacher, maybe a principal, maybe it’s a cop or your parents, and then they ask you the most commonly asked question.
They ask you “Why?” to whom you answer, “I don’t know,” of course because there is honestly a part of you that doesn’t know why you do what you do. You’re not even sure why you say what you say. You just do it. But deep down, you know there’s a reason. You know there’s something in there but it doesn’t have a name or a face or anything you can describe.
Exhale, whew. And now we begin.
It is not right that we say, this is it or this is all we’ll ever be. It is not true that we cannot or will not improve or change because everything changes.
Socrates said that change is law and no amount of pretending will change this law. And he is right.
No negotiations or compromises will be made. Life will happen. Bad things will happen. Good things will happen. We will rise and fall more times than the sun or the moon, and yet, time will not regard us.
Life will give us the unfortunate accidents the unexplainable misfortunes that range from minimal to modest or sad to tragic.
We will live and we will learn. We will encounter tragedy. We will both overcome and succumb to habits and routines.
I used to work an early shift that began at 6:00 in the morning. The good part is I finished at 2:00 but the bad part is I was up every morning before the sun.
Each day I’d arrive at the building about an hour before my start time because the trains only ran at certain hours.
This was okay because I’d start my day slowly, drink a little coffee, read some, write some, or watch the news some.
Each day, I’d see the same people on the train. None of them were happy to be where they were. No one was happy to be awake.
There is a house over on Prospect that has never taken down their Christmas decorations. The house has been this way for years. Then again, I moved away years ago. Perhaps this has changed. Truth is I’m not sure.
Year round though, the house was dressed with an old holiday spirit that was never removed. It is unclear if anyone lived in the house. I’ve never seen anyone come in or out. The house is aged and weathered and the landscaping is unkempt to say the least. I’m sure the neighbors on either side do not appreciate the look. The houses in the community are moderately priced. Prospect Avenue is a main street, although, the neighborhood is otherwise suburban and the town is the place I grew up.